At the end of the next Central Florida Tourism Oversight District Board of Supervisors meeting, the Board will meet with their attorneys to “discuss strategy and settlement negotiations” related to Disney’s lawsuit against them.
Disney Parks & Resorts filed their lawsuit against the Board and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in April. In the suit, Disney cites “A targeted campaign of government retaliation—orchestrated at every step by Governor DeSantis as punishment for Disney’s protected speech—now threatens Disney’s business operations, jeopardizes its economic future in the region, and violates its constitutional rights.” They filed the suit immediately after the Board officially voided Disney’s final agreement with the Reedy Creek Improvement District Board.
The agenda for the Board’s July 26 meeting lists “Attorney/Client Executive Closed Session” under “Other Business” at the end of the meeting. This is the description of the agenda item:
As requested by the Acting General Counsel, pursuant to Section 286.011(8), Florida Statutes, the Board of Supervisors of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District will hold an Attorney/Client Executive Closed Session to discuss strategy and settlement negotiations related to litigation expenditures in the following cases: Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S., Inc. v. DeSantis, et. al., N.D. Fla. Case No. 4:23-cv-00163-MW-MJF and Central Florida Tourism Oversight District v. Walt Disney Parks and Resorts U.S., Inc., Orange County Circuit Court Case No. 2023-CA-011818-O. The persons in attendance at the closed-door meeting will be Board of Supervisor members, Chair – Martin Garcia, Vice-Chair – Charbel Barakat, Brian Aungst, Jr., Ron Peri, and Bridget Ziegler; District Administrator Glenton Gilzean; Acting General Counsel Daniel Langley and A. Kurt Ardaman; and litigation counsel Paul Huck.
The Board’s only new business is a Collective Bargaining Agreement. The two public hearings on the agenda are for these resolutions:
- Resolution No. 645 – A resolution of the Board of Supervisors of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District adopting a fund balance policy.
- Resolution No. 646 – A resolution of the Board of Supervisors of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District adopting a conflicts of interest policy.
Just a few days after Disney filed their lawsuit, the CFTOD Board filed a countersuit against Disney. Judge Margaret H. Schreiber recently ruled that she would need more time to make a decision regarding Disney’s motion to dismiss the countersuit.
Governor DeSantis had filed a motion to dismiss Disney’s lawsuit. While Disney has requested a July 2024 court date, DeSantis asked for an August 2025 court date — which would be after the Presidential election.
Because Disney’s is a federal lawsuit, it is on a longer timeline than the CFOTD Board’s state lawsuit.
In other District news, they finally reached an agreement with the Reedy Creek Fire Department.