UPDATE (5pm): The lawsuit has been filed in Orange County. Here’s a link to our article and the lawsuit. The original article continues below.
This morning, the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District (CFTOD) met to discuss a single agenda item – to authorize litigation counsel to defend the Board and district officials in the Disney v DeSantis lawsuit.
During the public comments section of the meeting, a Disney Vacation Club owner spoke and suggested that the Board completely resign. He spoke in favor of Disney World not only as an owner but as a Florida resident, noting that roadways and landscaping are immaculate compared to the rest of the state. The DVC owner said that DeSantis and the Board have overstepped.
Board Chair Martin Garcia then outlined all of the good that he says the Board has accomplished in its first few months. From updated contracts to new officials, Garcia argued that the Board is simply doing what the former RCID Board should’ve been doing all along. During his argument, Garcia said that Disney is “trying to roll time back to 1967”. The lawsuit from Disney World does seek to undo the creation of the CFTOD, arguing that their creation was the result of a First Amendment violation from DeSantis.
Garcia then tried to distance the Board from the legislation that created the CFTOD. “The Board didn’t make the laws and had nothing to do with making those laws. Our role is simply to follow the laws enacted”, Garcia said.
He quickly went on the offensive by saying they’ve been forced to defend themselves. “We didn’t sue Disney, Disney sued us. We have no choice now but to respond”, Garcia said.
He then turned his attention to “seek justice in State court here in Central Florida”. Garcia introduced a motion to sue Walt Disney World in State court in Central Florida. Garcia said that the lawsuit will seek to “uphold and enforce the Board’s April 26th, 2023 legislative findings”.
The motion to start the lawsuit passed unanimously.
For more on the legislative findings, check out our earlier article on the previous meeting.
As always, keep checking back with us here at BlogMickey.com as we continue to bring you the latest news, photos, and info from around the Disney Parks!