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Former Disney District Board Under Investigation for Possible Criminal and Civil Violations

DeSantis has ordered an investigation into Disney’s maneuvering to evade Florida law, according to a letter signed by the governor.

TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis sent a letter to the Chief Inspector General of the State of Florida ordering an investigation into potential civil and criminal violations of the previous board of supervisors for the Disney special district.

Disney delegated the Florida special district’s legislative authority to itself in an attempt to subvert the new act by Governor DeSantis and state lawmakers, according to the new board.

According to the governor’s office, the agreements the prior Reedy Creek Improvement District (RCID) board attempted to shove through at the 11th hour are likely invalid, and all legislative options are back on the table.

This investigation, in consultation with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, will focus on the following areas:

  • RCID's adherence to applicable Florida civil and criminal laws and ethics requirements
  • The qualifications of RCID’s prior board of supervisors and the legal validity of their actions
  • The involvement of Walt Disney World employees and agents in the execution of RCID’s actions
  • Any financial gain or benefit derived by Walt Disney World as a result of RCID’s actions and RCID’s justification for such actions
  • All RCID board, employee, or agent communications related to RCID’s actions, including those with Walt Disney World employees and agents
  • All RCID board, employee, or agent communications related to House Bill 9-B, Reedy Creek Improvement District, Orange and Osceola Counties, and the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District (CFTOD)

Last Thursday, Attorney General Ashley Moody demanded all records related to the discussion of the contracts signed by the previous Disney board on February 8, 2023. Moody said failure to comply with the request could result in criminal or civil penalties.

Deputy Press Secretary Jeremy Redfern with the Governor’s Office said that Disney is again fighting to keep its special corporate benefits and dodge Florida law. “We are not going to let that happen. As Governor DeSantis recently said: you ain't seen nothing yet,” Redfern warned.