Florida Governor Ron DeSantis had successfully gained control of the self-governing district that comprises Disney World until his approved board discovered Disney still has all the control — at least for another 30 years.
DeSantis’s hand-selected board was in for a surprise when it realized that in the hours before Florida House Representatives approved a government takeover of the self-governing district, Disney’s board — still controlled by the company’s appointees — transferred the special district’s duties over to Disney.
Now, the DeSantis-appointed board has revealed it is considering taking the outgoing board to court over the maneuver.
The agreement the DeSantis-appointed board is disputing was made between Disney and the company-controlled outgoing board.
The outgoing board agreed to give Disney control over most of its Footprint in Central Florida for thirty years. During that time, the board would be stifled from taking significant action without the company’s say-so.
On Wednesday (March 29), a spokesperson for DeSantis’ office, Taryn Fenske, acknowledged that the Governor’s Office was unaware of the “last ditch efforts to execute contracts… before ratifying the new law that transfers rights” before this week.
In fact, the move was only discovered on Wednesday during a Central Florida Tourism Oversight Board meeting.
Fenske explained the state would be pursuing legal action against Disney for the maneuver describing the agreement between Disney and the outgoing board as “hav[ing] significant legal infirmities that would render the contracts void as a matter of law.”
Fenske also revealed that the DeSantis-appointed board has retained several “financial and legal firms to conduct audits and investigate Disney’s past behavior.”