Experts Say Disney Can Sue State of Florida for Retaliation Over Reedy Creek Improvement District

Constitutional law experts have weighed in on the Reedy Creek Improvement District situation and determined that Disney may have a retaliation case against the State of Florida, according to local news network WFTV9.

“Once the government provides a benefit, that benefit can’t be taken away in a way that is unconstitutional,” said Lawrence Walters, a managing partner of Longwood-based Walters Law Group.

Recently, Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law the proposal to dissolve districts established prior to November 1968. Since Disney’s statement of intent to have the “Parental Rights in Education” law removed, DeSantis has been open in his movement against the state’s largest employer.

“You’re a corporation based in Burbank, California, and you’re going to martial your economic might to attack the parents of my state?” DeSantis said. “We view that as a provocation, and we’re going to fight back against that.”

“You have to prove the retaliation was done for this specific purpose,” Stetson University Law Professor Paul Boudreaux said. “I’m fairly certain that Disney would have an excellent case, and a really great chance of winning a case,” he said.

Boudreaux noted an advantage Florida would have: Disney would be challenging legislation voted on by a large group of people, each with their own motivations.

However, he, along with many others, theorized that Disney would likely pursue negotiations with lawmakers to alter the terms of the Reedy Creek district when the regular session resumes in March.

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  1. State giveth and the state taketh away. This is a privilege and not a right. Disney stepped in it and are now paying the price. I don’t feel sorry for them at all

  2. That was created when Walt plan was to build a “city of tomorrow” which did not happen. So that would technically null the agreement.

    1. Amen Brother!

      I also have DVC that maybe Intervals options look better. They are forgetting their base for the vocal minority. Chapek is already Nickel’ing and Dime’ing us to death (Price of Annual Pass, no more Fast Pass unless pay, no more magical express, pricing skyrocketing, etc). Is the business model to become six flags? Now he adds this to his list of offenses. He must go and return to Values based entertainment. I never minded paying for Quality, but not at the expense of Wokeness

  3. The smart thing for Disney to do is negotiate with Florida to settle the issue.
    While the state and it’s citizens are correct that Disney has no business getting involved in legislation regarding the education of Florida’s children, dissolving the RCID may be illegal under state law. That being said, the citizens will not tolerate over interference in political issues not involving Disney.

  4. How about Disney stay out of Politics! They are ruining the Brand. Lawsuit would shine a light on the stupidity of their actions.

  5. No matter where anyone stands on the issues, we need to stand for the Constitution.

    Government retaliation against a person OR BUSINESS expressing an opinion that the government does not like is a violation of the First Amendment and such action is unconstitutional.

  6. Whether Disney can sue for retaliation or not may not be the deciding factor of their pursuit to do so. If Disney were to sue, then the state of Florida could claim the right of discovery and thus pry into some things Disney would prefer to keep confidential. That’s not saying Disney has anything illegal to hide, but most companies prefer to keep their inner workings confidential if at all possible. Litigation can be a tricky path to navigate.

  7. Disney is forgetting that is was Desantis and the state of Florida who allowed to them to re-open in 2020 and worked with them on a re-opening plan, when many other states were not doing this (case in point, CA where Disneyland was closed for more than a year!) They can “sue” or do whatever they need to do to appeal the RCID dissolution, but this should be a hard lesson for them to stay in their own lane and stay out of state politics, especially a stated who helped them in the past.

    1. Disney reopening brought needed tourism money back in. If they didn’t reopen, that wouldn’t help Florida. They both need each other, it’s not just Disney needing the state.

      1. In fact, Disney does not *need* florida. Losing Walt Disney World would certainly be a loss, but Disney Corporation could shutter their florida operations, sell all their land, and continue to operate at a massive profit with a huge new influx of capital.

        Disney would lose a fraction of its operating income. Florida would lose 400,000 jobs, and hundreds of billions of dollars of tourism revenue.

        Disney does NOT need Florida. Florida needs Disney. Without Disney, Florida is a an economically broken backwater that will make Mississippi look wealthy. Without Florida…Disney is still the same company it is now, just with one less theme park location around the world to visit.

    2. The state is being a bully, plain and simple.

      It’s comical and sad at the time. Republicans have spent years trying to ensure corporations have the same rights as individuals. Now the Constitution oy applies if you’re on “our side”. Disney exercises they’re first amendment rights and suddenly they’ve stepped out of their lane because they were critical of the legislation. If the law was sound to begin with, such criticisms shouldn’t even be such a big deal. Had Disney came out in favor of it, these same lawmakers would be praising them. This has nothing to do with standing up for Florida residents. Some of those residents even agree with Disney. No, this is the state trying to silence critics which is antitehictal to the very idea of our democracy.

      This kind of tribalism, on both sides, is what’s going to the downfall of us, sigh.

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