Disney and the CFTOD Agree To Narrow Federal Lawsuit
The Walt Disney Company and the Ron DeSantis-appointed Central Florida Tourism Oversight District (CFTOD) have agreed to narrow the scope of Disney’s lawsuit against the governor and his allies.
Disney was initially suing DeSantis and Florida legislators in federal court over the dissolution of the Disney-appointed Reedy Creek Improvement District.
In their suit, Disney alleges that the district was dissolved in retaliation for the company speaking out against Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law (which critics have dubbed “Don’t Say Gay”).
Additionally, Disney was suing the DeSantis-appointed CFTOD over the nullification of binding contracts that Disney made with Reedy Creek in the waning days of that district’s existence.
Disney Amends Its Federal Lawsuit
With Disney and the CFTOD already battling over the contracts in state court, Disney has amended its federal suit to focus solely on the alleged First Amendment violations.
After a Florida judge dismissed Disney’s motion to throw out the CFTOD state lawsuit, the company filed a motion in federal court last week to narrow its suit against DeSantis.
The motion was initially dismissed by Judge Allen Windsor for procedural reasons. According to the judge, proper procedure requires that Disney first confer with the defendants. If both sides agree on the amended suit, Judge Windsor would not have to make a ruling.
The CFTOD Releases A Statement
After accepting Disney’s proposal to narrow the suit, district spokesman Alexei Woltornist released a statement.
“We are pleased that Disney backtracked on these legal claims against the district in their federal case. Disney’s latest legal move puts them in line with the position of what the district has been advocating for months now. That these matters should be decided in state court. We hope this helps expedite justice for the people of Florida,” he said.
Following today’s motion, the parameters of both lawsuits involving Disney and the CFTOD seem to be set. In state court, the two sides will litigate the binding agreements that Disney made with Reedy Creeek. Meanwhile, in federal court, they will battle over Disney’s First Amendment rights.
As always, stay tuned. We will continue to bring you updates on all the happenings in the ongoing feud between Disney and Ron DeSantis.