The ongoing battle between the State of Florida/Governor Ron DeSantis, and The Walt Disney Company/Bob Iger has reached a new chapter. This one goes after the Walt Disney World monorail system.
Governor Ron DeSantis had previously mentioned monorail inspections coming to Disney World, but it wasn’t official until yesterday, May 11, 2023.
The new bill (HB 1305), passed by Florida lawmakers and signed by Governor DeSantis, authorizes the Florida Department of Transportation to inspect Disney World’s 14.7-mile monorail system.
The bill passed the Florida legislature along party lines and goes into effect on July 1. It will require the Walt Disney World monorail to undergo annual onsite evaluations and complete compliance reports every three years.
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NEW: Gov. Ron DeSantis signs HB 1305, a bill that authorizes the Florida Department of Transportation to inspect Disney’s monorail system. pic.twitter.com/U4XhJCnhZR
— Scott Gustin (@ScottGustin) May 11, 2023
Reactions to the Bill
Reactions to the bill appear to be mixed by both Disney World fans and Florida residents. Some, who are not fans of Governor Ron DeSantis, favor the measure because they believe the Florida government should be in charge of mass transit safety regulations instead of a private business. Meanwhile, many Disney World fans (Republican and Democrat) don’t support the move as they see it as a form of political punishment that may, in turn, negatively impact Park Guests and Florida residents.
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The Future of the Feud
This comes amid multiple back-and-forth threats, lawsuits, and comments between the Walt Disney Company and the Florida Governor’s office. There are currently lawsuits filed between both parties and PR campaigns accusing one another of putting personal egos ahead of voters and Park Guests. Walt Disney World has already “lost” Reedy Creek Improvement District, and Governor Ron DeSantis is doing himself no public relation favors if he hopes to rise to a national stage.
The endgame goal of The Walt Disney Company and Governor Ron DeSantis seems unclear. It is unlikely that Gov DeSantis could (or would even want to) put Disney World out of business. It’s also unlikely that the Walt Disney Company could win a battle against Florida lawmakers and a potential presidential candidate. Both parties are in a situation where they need one another to succeed, yet neither Governor DeSantis nor Disney CEO Bob Iger seems willing to be the first to blink.
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Unfortunately, average Americans and Florida residents (Disney World fans or not) will be “collateral damage.” At the same time, Disney CEO Bob Iger and Gov DeSantis will live lives of wealth and success even after they leave their current roles.
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