(ORLANDO) Board members of the agency now responsible for the Disney World lands in Florida on Monday authorized a lawsuit against the entertainment giant.
Members of the new Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, all of whom were appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis, voted unanimously to sue Disney in state court in Orlando.
They also voted to defend themselves in federal court in Tallahassee, where the multinational entertainment company filed a lawsuit against the governor of Florida last Wednesday. Disney believes it is being retaliated against by the Republican Governor for opposing Florida’s bill dubbed “Don’t Say Gay.”
In its lawsuit against Mr. DeSantis and the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, Disney is asking a judge to overturn the governor’s takeover of the larger theme park district, which has until now been controlled by Disney, since 55 years.
Disney filed a lawsuit last week after the DeSantis-appointed Central Florida Tourism Oversight District voted to void an agreement that gave the company authority over design and construction decisions at its sprawling properties. near Orlando.
Disney’s lawsuit was the latest salvo in a more than year-long feud between Disney and Governor DeSantis, who is preparing to enter the Republican primary for the US presidency.
The fight began last year after Disney, under significant pressure, publicly opposed a Florida state law that bans early elementary school classes on sexual orientation and gender identity. gender, a policy critics call “Don’t Say Gay.”
In retaliation, Mr. DeSantis regained control of the self-governing district of Disney World and appointed a new board of supervisors to oversee municipal services at sprawling theme parks near Orlando.
But before the new board arrived, Disney pushed through a last-minute deal that stripped the new supervisors of much of their authority.