Disney Contemplates Options as Florida Tightens Grip

Disney World has been a staple of the state of Florida for over 50 years, but it might be time to say goodbye. 

On March 28, 2022, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill, known as the so-called “Don’t Say Gay” bill. This bill made it so that after July 1st, Florida educators would not be able to teach kids in certain grades about sexual orientation and gender identity. This bill has been criticized by many people, including Disney’s CEO, Bob Chapek. 

On April 22nd, 2022, DeSantis signed a new bill that strips the Walt Disney Company of its special tax status in the Florida area. Most people have widely viewed this act as retaliation for Disney’s criticism of the Parental Rights in Education law. Disney had this special tax status in the first place because Disney World is placed on the Reedy Creek Improvement District, which was made to entice Disney into building the Disney World in the first place. 

The Reedy Creek Improvement District saved Disney millions of dollars a year for cheaper taxes and fees, and now that Disney doesn’t have that savings, its hard to say whether Disney would keep Disney World open and spend more money, or completely shut down Disney World and create more Disney Lands around the country.  

Source contributing to this story: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/21/business/disney-florida-special-tax-status.html