RCID Employees Express Sadness at the Loss of Disney Annual Pass Benefits

RCID Employees Express Sadness at the Loss of Disney Annual Pass Benefits rcid-firefighter-dress-greens

During the public comments section of Wednesday’s meeting of the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, several firefighters of the Reedy Creek Fire Department spoke to Monday’s announcement of the removal of the Disney pass benefits that they’ve been accustomed to enjoying for more than fifty years.

District Chair Martin Garcia said that a number of media reports have been inaccurate and do not include all the facts or perspective of the policy change. Garcia responded, saying the District is relying on its lawyers to advise them on what’s required of them regarding benefits to the firefighters and their families.

Garcia also said the benefit is discriminatory as it benefits only one business… Disney. He mentioned that the previous board was paying $2.5 million to one taxpayer in the District (Disney) rather than being able to use it at a non-Disney location such as a restaurant or hotel. It was exclusive to Disney and not in favor of any others.

Garcia also claimed that the benefit was “inequitable” as some families are larger than others so some were given a larger benefit than a single person family. The District claims they were paying Disney more money for passes than were actually being used with 30% use being the lowest percentage and 67% being the highest. So, the District claims that the old board was technically paying for passes that weren’t being used. A decision was made that salaries would be “grossed up” by $1,425 to make up for eliminating the Disney pass benefits. The District says that they will continue to work on whether or not that is the correct dollar amount as they try to replace the benefit that’s being removed with salary.

Finally, the District stated that the benefits policy has the potential of being unlawful in Florida as well. Garcia says that as a private company, Disney is not legally allowed to provide free passes (gifts) to government employees who are either providing services or have authority over them.

We will continue to follow this story and provide any updates.

Senior Editor for the DIS and DCL Fan | Disney Vacation Club Member | Thrilled to have been a '13/'14 Disney Parks Moms Panelist (now planDisney) | Lover of all things Disney; the Magic of Disneyland, Walt Disney World, and Disney Cruise Line | ºoº


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