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DeSantis board votes on the Annual Pass replacement

DeSantis board votes on the Annual Pass replacement

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Annual Passes for Disney World are a great perk for those who visit often. The DeSantis-appointed board just voted on its replacement.

DeSantis’ Central Florida Tourism Oversight Board

Credit: KtP

When the state of Florida dismantled the Reedy Creek Improvement District, they replaced it with the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District (CFTOD for short). Essentially, it is now the governing body for Disney World.

Any new construction, laws, or amendments Disney wants to make will now have to go through the CFTOD.

Of course, with Disney no longer its own governing body, some issues have popped up. This is not at all surprising, especially when you consider that the five board members were all appointed by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.

Elimination of Employee Benefits

Recently, the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District submitted a referral to the Florida Inspector General regarding millions of dollars’ worth of perks and benefits that the former Disney-controlled Reedy Creek Improvement District funneled back to Disney.

Disney sent the CFTOD a bill for $492,382.96 for “Q1 FY22 Tickets.” That is not including merchandise, tickets, and hotel discounts. In the past, Disney used tax-payer money to provide RCID employee (NOT Disney Cast Members) benefits like season passes and merchandise/food/hotel discounts.

In 2022 alone, it cost taxpayers over $2.5 million.

Credit: Maggie

Disney expects the CFTOD to pay that bill as it is now the governing body. Of course, this was met with resistance. The CFTOD proposed that employees would no longer be able to receive benefits like annual passes to the theme parks.

Many members of Reedy Creek services spoke out against the removal of their benefits. They cited that this new change is a “low blow” to the district’s public servants.

Voted for a Replacement

Credit: Monica

In a budget meeting on September 13, the CFTOD announced it would move forward with stripping away this employee perk. Administrator Glen Gilzean did mention he has been having conversations with employees in an effort to understand which perks are most important to them.

In addition, he will work with the board to increase the previous lump sum that replaced the theme park entry benefit. That number will be available at the next meeting later this month.

Credit: KtP

Now, the board just voted for the annual pass benefit replacement. Moving forward, the district will given employees a stipend of $3,000. This stipend can then be used to purchase annual passes if desired. They will issue it 90 days from the date of hire after the probationary period and then again annually.

With the highest tier of an annual pass costing $1399, this seems like a good deal for those employees. Gilzean said, “District Leadership ultimately determined that $3,000 was the actual cost of purchasing the equivalent pass benefits currently held by most employees.”

Do you think this is a fair replacement? Let us know in the comments below, and share this post with a friend.

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Friday 29th of September 2023

Missing from this article is noting the fact that these tickets were illegal to give in the first place. Government employees cannot be given perks from a single source taxpayer. This would be considered to be bribery. That's why the passes were substituted for a stipend instead. Also 70% of the tickets were wasted. One of the board members reinforced the fact that these tickets again were illegal in the same meeting.

Rob Hunter

Thursday 28th of September 2023

Another fake headline to encourage us to read it.


Thursday 28th of September 2023

This has nothing to do with non-employee annual pass holders.

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