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Ron DeSantis Denies Florida Taxpayers Will Pay Off Disney's $1bn Debts
Ron DeSantis has denied that stripping Disney of its special privileges and tax breaks will mean local residents will have to foot a billion-dollar bill instead.DeSantis signed a bill that revoked Disney's special tax district privileges and its ability to self-govern protected under the Reedy Creek Improvement District on April 22.The move was in retaliation for Disney's objection to the governor-backed HB 1557, the legislation critics have dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" bill.In a statement to shareholders, Reedy Creek Improvement District said the plan to dissolve the law permitting Disney to run as its own self-governing authority will not work as the 1967 legislation included a pledge by the state of Florida that it would not "impair the rights or remedies" of the holders until all its debts are cleared.Reedy Creek currently has about $1 billion in outstanding bond debt, according to the credit rating agency Fitch Ratings, meaning that residents in counties such as Orange and Osceola may have to cover the shortfall with increased taxes.Speaking to Fox News' Laura Ingraham during a televised town hall in Orlando, DeSantis denied that taxpayers in Florida will have to pay the billion dollars after the legislation dissolving the special purpose district comes into effect on June 1, 2023."Disney will pay its debts. Disney will for the first time actually live under the same laws as everybody else in Florida," the Republican governor said."The bonds will be paid by Disney.
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