Last Updated: May 19, 2023, 03:02 IST
Disney canceled plans for a new employee campus in central Florida on Thursday in the latest ripple effect from its feud with Republican governor of the state Ron DeSantis.
The entertainment giant will not move forward with the Lake Nona project due to “considerable changes” since the original announcement, “including new leadership and changing business conditions,” said a memo from parks chairman Josh D’Amaro.
The project, first announced in July 2021, was expected to relocate 2,000 jobs from California to Lake Nona, which is about 20 miles (30 kilometers) east of the huge Disney World complex in Orlando.
The staff was to have included workers in digital technology, finance and product development, with an average wage of $120,000, Orlando business groups said at the time of the announcement.
But Disney has been embroiled in an increasingly pitched battle with DeSantis, who is reportedly planning to launch his bid for the Republican presidential nomination next week.
The origin of the fight has been Disney’s criticism of a DeSantis-backed law banning school lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity.
In February, DeSantis removed Disney’s control of its special self-governing district, which allowed the city-sized park to run its own zoning and infrastructure projects, exempt from state regulations.
In April, Disney sued DeSantis, characterizing the Florida governor’s actions as a “targeted campaign of government retaliation” that violates the company’s right to free speech.
Earlier this week, Disney asked a judge to throw out a lawsuit filed by a DeSantis-aligned oversight board.
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – AFP)