Reedy Creek board members attempt to seize control back from Disney as power struggle intensifies

REEDY CREEK, Fla. — The power struggle between Disney and the governor’s appointed Reedy Creek board could further escalate into an extended court battle.

Documents show the new board members are trying to one-up Disney and seize control of all planning and development in the cities of Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista.

Last month, it was revealed that Disney quietly stripped the new board of its development power before handing over control.

Board members now appear to be trying to claw some of that back.


The DeSantis-appointed board overseeing Reedy Creek has spent the past two weeks trying to figure out what power it had left after the old board signed most of the district’s authority over to Disney as members walked out the door in February ahead of the state takeover.

Documents now show that board members aren’t ready to cede their power and proposed a resolution stating that they have superior authority and making the board the ultimate body of approval for development in the district, as well as the cities of Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista.

The move by the board is likely to set off a new front in the fight between the board and the company.

Read: Equality Florida issues travel advisory warning against visiting, moving to the state

Not only does the resolution attempt to trample on the February agreement that essentially gives Disney veto power, but it also strips powers away from two constitutionally authorized cities - as unusual as they may be.

Board member Brian Aungst weighed in about his issues with the cities after he called them fictitious during the last meeting.

“We’re going to work together with them. I’m not telling them what to do. I’m just making sure they’re not doing anything similar to what Disney did in the prior board right before we got appointed. We just need to make sure we’re all working and walking together,” Aungst said.

Read: Controversial bill that will ban children from drag shows and fine businesses passes House panel

Aungst told the Orlando Business Journal he has not read this new resolution and won’t comment before next week’s meeting.

Disney executives hinted they view all the actions the government is now taking as retaliatory, which could set them up for their future court arguments.

Read: Florida lawmakers propose bill to allow death penalty in child rape cases

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.

Comments on this article