Disney World could face code enforcement fines from its new governing board

REEDY CREEK 1 (Large) (1)
'This is another tool in the toolbox for enforcement.'

Walt Disney World could potentially be fined by its new state-run governing board for code violations.

The Gov. Ron DeSantis-appointed governing board approved a resolution to start setting up the structure for a code enforcement department that could levy fines ranging from $75 to $500 per day for code violations. It takes effect Aug. 1.

The resolution was passed unanimously by the Central Florida Tourism Oversight board that took over in March and has since made numerous changes, including hiring a new district administrator Wednesday.

Under the new code enforcement department, code enforcement officers would issue citations. If someone wants to contest a violation, an independent special magistrate will be set up to hear appeals. “The enforcement citation program authorizes the imposition of fines, liens and if necessary foreclosures of liens,” according to a district staff report.

Daniel Langley, the district’s special general counsel, said the fines could be issued for building code and fire violations, failed environmental requirements and other rules the district decides in the future.

The old Reedy Creek Improvement District Board did not have such a program set up before, unlike most local governments that have code enforcements in place, he said.

“This is another tool in the toolbox for enforcement,” Langley said. “I’m actually not aware of any local government in Central Florida not having some sort of code enforcement process when you have rules and regulations and ordinances that say thou shalt not do X, Y and Z or you’re violating our code or regulations.”

One Celebration resident raised concerns about how the public will stay informed about the new rules after the board sets up the department.

“How will we know about them? Or how would anybody know about them?” she asked during public comment at Wednesday’s meeting.

Langley promised to post the rules online, vowing to make the district more transparent.

Currently, Disney is facing a civil lawsuit from a contractor who accused Disney of safety and fire code violations that slowed down the renovation at Disney World’s Saratoga Springs Resort. Disney and Validus Construction Services, which sued in 2020, are scheduled to go to trial in September, according to Orange Circuit Court records.

Gabrielle Russon

Gabrielle Russon is an award-winning journalist based in Orlando. She covered the business of theme parks for the Orlando Sentinel. Her previous newspaper stops include the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, Toledo Blade, Kalamazoo Gazette and Elkhart Truth as well as an internship covering the nation’s capital for the Chicago Tribune. For fun, she runs marathons. She gets her training from chasing a toddler around. Contact her at [email protected] or on Twitter @GabrielleRusson .


  • Michael K

    May 10, 2023 at 5:24 pm

    Is Gay Days at Disney World considered a code violation?

    Asking for a friend.

    • Al Sharpton

      May 10, 2023 at 5:59 pm

      Really? Lots of their workers are gay. You trying to start a false narrative? I’m all for sending Disney back to Kalifornia and putting them on the hook for reparations.

  • richard bruce

    May 10, 2023 at 8:46 pm

    I have code enforcers frequently patrolling my neighborhood. I once got fined for parking the wrong way in front of my house. Why isn’t Disney DEI leadership tolerating unfair treatment?

Comments are closed.


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