House committee signs off on proposal to change Disney’s Reedy Creek

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — A state House committee signed off on changes to Disney’s Reedy Creek Improvement District on Wednesday.

The nearly 200-page bill gives the governor the authority to appoint a five-member board of supervisors for the district.


The measure would also change Reedy Creek’s name to the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District.

On Wednesday afternoon, Osceola County State Rep. Fred Hawkins made a brief, 3-minute presentation of the bill to dissolve Reedy Creek’s special district.

Read: Florida lawmakers continue special section to determine future of Disney’s Reedy Creek

The meeting went only an hour, quicker than expected even with many questions, most of them by Rep. Anna Eskamani.

Democrats’ concerns were about the board being appointed, like how much power they will have and why the governor get to pick all five of them.

Watch: Florida special session: 189-page bill proposes future of Reedy Creek

But Hawkins said most things will remain the same and that this is really just a name and board change. That includes keeping employees like the Reedy Creek firefighters who have been waiting to get out from under Disney’s control.

“We have long lived under the single interest board of supervisors we are more than happy this bill passed today,” said fire union president Jon Shirey.

The bill is headed to the House floor on Thursday and the Senate floor on Friday.

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Shannon Butler

Shannon Butler, WFTV.com

Shannon joined the Eyewitness News team in 2013.

Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson, WFTV.com

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.