It’s no secret that the Walt Disney Company and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis are in a massive feud right now.
This feud started when DeSantis passed the Parental Rights in Education Act in 2022, otherwise known as the “Don’t Say Gay Bill,” which strips teachers and students of their right to discuss topics related to sexuality in certain classrooms.
Now, a year and a half after Bob Chapek and Ron DeSantis began this feud, things have already begun changing drastically.
It All Started With a Bill…
For example, Disney’s Reedy Creek Improvement District has been dismantled and replaced with DeSantis’s Central Florida Tourism Oversight District (CFTOD). Now, the Florida Governor has complete control over the members of the new board.
Not only that, but the Walt Disney Company is currently suing Governor Ron DeSantis along with the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, claiming that the government official is retaliating against the company, who was well within its rights of the First Amendment (Freedom of Speech). As a result, DeSantis and the CFTOD are also suing the Walt Disney Company.
If you think it’s a mess, you’re not alone. Unfortunately, a new report suggests things are about to get even messier.
Yes, Things Can Get Worse From Here…
According to the Orlando Sentinel, Disney will be the one footing the bill for both sides of this legal battle.
The CFTOD is undoubtedly going to spend millions of dollars in order to pay for legal expenses, reportedly paying “its top litigators $795 an hour.” DeSantis’s new board has already spent “nearly $2 million,” but the board projects that an additional “$4.5 million” will be spent on legal expenses in the upcoming year.
Of course, this money has to come from somewhere, such as taxpayer dollars. In an ironic twist of events, however, “Disney and its affiliates pay about 86% of the 25,000-acre district’s property taxes,” with various resorts and hotels making up the remaining 14%.
What Does That Mean For Disney?
In short, Disney isn’t just paying its own side of the legal battles, it’s also paying for DeSantis’s new board, and it couldn’t come at a worse time.
Currently, the Walt Disney Company’s stock is at the lowest it’s been in nearly ten years. Not only that, but fans have begun to notice Disney cutting various corners, and we can’t help but think it’s due, in part, to these ongoing legal battles.
There’s no way of knowing how things will continue for DeSantis’s CFTOD and the Walt Disney Company, so be sure to stay tuned to Disney Dining for the latest updates regarding the situation.