Universal Orlando gets a new road. You might get higher taxes | Commentary (Orlando Sentinel, 10/15/19)

You could argue Universal — whose parent company posted $11.7 billion in profits last year from families like mine — should pay for its own darn road, since the park is clearly the prime beneficiary. (So much so that Universal is in charge of construction. That’s unusual.) … Don’t base your spending plan on the whims or orders of the tourism bosses or entrenched staff. Think for yourselves. Map out your 10-year spending plan based on what this community needs, not what tourism leaders crave. Read more>>

Visit Orlando got $55 million in tax dollars last year. Now it wants a whole lot more | Commentary (Orlando Sentinel, 9/24/19)

Just recently, Orange County unveiled plans to spend $125 million in tax dollars — money that could be spent on cops, transit or other local needs — on a road Universal Orlando wants for its new theme park. Why not consider using hotel taxes on that? Why ask locals to fund this tourism project when tourism-tax dollars are available? Read more >>

Epic Universe Discloses Job Details | Commentary (Orlando Sentinel, 9/11/19)

Universal wouldn’t answer questions or provide full details. And the county hasn’t asked for them … which strikes me as a problem. Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and the rest of the county commissioners should demand — and share — a full accounting of the job and salary details before striking any agreement that involves taxpayer money. Read more >>

Universal to get state money to build road to new Epic Universe park | Exclusive (Orlando Sentinel, 8/22/19)

The $315 million road extension will provide a crucial link between Universal’s existing parks and hotels on the northern end of the I-Drive corridor and the new park at the southern end. It’s so important to Universal’s expansion plans that the resort will, according to a preliminary agreement with Orange County, design, engineer, permit and construct the publicly owned road itself — and get public sources to help foot the bill. Read more >>