City Manager Randy Knight applied for Ron DeSantis' Disney oversight board
Knight did not immediately respond to a request for comment
By Beth Kassab
City Manager Randy Knight applied for the top job at the new Central Florida Tourism Oversight District, created by Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Legislature to take back power from Walt Disney World over the special taxing district formerly known as Reedy Creek.
Knight’s resume was one of four received by the board, the Orlando Sentinel reported. He did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Knight, who has worked for Winter Park for more than 20 years, let commissioners know privately after Wednesday night’s meeting that he applied for the job, according to three commissioners.
“Randy let me know he had been asked to submit his resume for the position last night,” said Mayor Phil Anderson. “But I’m relieved that Randy will continue to be able to work on the commission’s priorities.”
DeSantis’ board hired Glen Gilzean, president of the Central Florida Urban League and a former lobbyist for Step Up for Students, for the position at a salary of $400,000. The Legislature created the new board in the wake of a political showdown between DeSantis and Disney after the company spoke out last year against about the law known as “Don’t Say Gay” and stopped making political contributions in Florida. Disney has filed a lawsuit alleging that the state’s actions are a retaliatory response to the company’s free speech.
Commissioner Marty Sullivan said Knight, who earns about $220,000 in his current role, also told him last night that he applied.
“He said the job paid $400,000 and he couldn’t pass up the opportunity,” Sullivan said.