Is the Disney-DeSantis Feud Really Over? Disney Resumes Donating to Florida Lawmakers

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) has resumed providing in-kind donations to political committees and lawmakers in Florida, following a two-year pause due to a feud with Governor Ron DeSantis over the controversial “Don’t Say Gay” bill. 

The Orlando Sentinel reported that Disney gave more than $87,000 worth of nonmonetary contributions in April and May. While the company has not donated to DeSantis per se, it has donated to some Republican lawmakers who supported the bill, which restricts discussions of gender and sexual orientation in classrooms.

Recipients of Disney’s in-kind donations include committees affiliated with Republican state senators Jason Brodeur and Joe Gruters, as well as Representative Josie Tomkow, all of whom voted in favor of the Parental Rights in Education Act. 

However, the company’s largest single in-kind contribution, amounting to $28,487, went to Daley for Florida, a committee supporting Democratic state Representative Dan Daley.

The resumption of political donations comes after Disney and DeSantis settled their legal battle in March, which had stemmed from the governor’s takeover of the special tax district overseeing Walt Disney World in response to the company’s opposition to the bill. Despite the settlement, Democratic Senator Geraldine Thompson said that Disney headquarters has not yet approved monetary donations.

Also read: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Tries to Walk Away from Disney Feud Amid Struggling Presidential Campaign 

In related news, the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, now controlled by DeSantis’ appointees, approved Disney’s $17 billion development deal on Wednesday. The deal allows Disney to invest billions in its Walt Disney World properties over the next 10 to 20 years, potentially including the construction of a fifth park. 

In exchange, Disney must award half of the related construction work to Florida-based businesses, spend $10 million on affordable housing projects, and donate 100 acres of land to the tourism district.

Information for this story was found via Insider, and the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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