Florida legislature special session starts Monday

On Monday afternoon, Florida’s legislature is set to discuss five issues during a special session. 

UCF political science professor Aubrey Jewett said special sessions are called together at times when state lawmakers normally wouldn't be meeting. 

"We do allow special sessions when issues come up, either emergencies in between regular sessions, or just when the governor or legislative leadership think there are issues that need to be addressed."

The five topics being discussed involve providing emergency resources to hurricane victims, strengthening the state's elections laws, responding to illegal immigrants, letting college athletes cash-in on their fame, and the status of several "special districts," including Disney World's property, known as Reedy Creek.

"I think the speculation among most people following Florida politics is that the governor and legislature is calling the special session on these particular issues because they want to highlight the importance of these issues," Jewett said. "And allow the governor to claim some credit for doing some of these things."

The Florida House is set to open the special session Monday at 1 p.m., the Senate will start their special session proceedings at 2 p.m. Of the five issues, the one most specific to Central Florida is the status of Disney’s Reedy Creek.

The governor asked the legislature to dissolve the Disney-run district last year, after the company pushed-back against the state's controversial ‘Parental Rights Bill,’ which critics call the ‘Don't Say Gay Bill.’

"Nobody in the public or media knows what's in that bill because they haven't released it, but presumably they've been working behind the scenes, and they'll make it public, come Monday," Jewett said.

So far, what we do know about that bill, is that it will establish a board appointed by the governor to oversee the Disney property. 

"So we know the general outline of how it'll look," Jewett said. "We just haven't seen the details, yet."