Central Florida Tourism Oversight District Votes Itself “Superior Authority” Over Disney
The Central Florida Tourism Central District voted to give itself “superior authority” over Disney when it comes to planning and development issues in Lake Buena Vista and Bay Lake.
The latest maneuver comes as the CFTOD looks for avenues to reclaim authority after the revelation that Disney and the Reedy Creek Improvement District entered into binding agreements in that district’s waning days.
Were The Reedy Creek Agreements “Self-Dealing”?
Governor Ron DeSantis and the CFTOD’s strategy to regain power look to be two-fold. On one hand, board members have argued that Disney and Reedy Creek’s agreement was essentially self-dealing.
Bolstering their argument is a series of emails drafting the Reedy Creek agreements, which came from Disney’s legal team. The unclear differentiation between the work of Reedy Creek and that of Disney may give the state a leg to stand on.
A Legal Technicality
The other avenue that Florida is taking to nullify the deals revolves around a technicality. The Central Florida Tourism Oversight District’s lawyers say that Reedy Creek did not send notices of their binding agreement. This procedural issue would violate the agreements.
At their Tuesday meeting, the CFTOD also listed off a number of changes it wants to make. These include bringing affordable housing to Reedy Creek property and raising property tax rates.
“Our board truly wanted to work with Disney, instead the corporation decided that compromise was out of the question. It was Disney’s way or the highway. This is why we were forced to hire litigation counsel,” said Martin Garcia, chairman of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District.
At this time, Disney has not made a public comment on today’s developments.
While this story is likely far from over, it seems as if Disney’s Reedy Creek maneuvering may have more legal holes than was previously expected.
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