Lack of funds threaten to sink HMAS Tobruk dive wreck
THE push to scuttle the HMAS Tobruk in Wide Bay waters has hit a hurdle after the State Government and Fraser Coast Regional Council said funding could not be committed.
The initial cost of securing the vessel is expected to be about $5 million, but the injection into the Wide Bay economy is predicted to be about $1 million each year for about 50 years.
Burrum Heads would be the closest boat ramp to the scuttled ship.
Maryborough MP Bruce Saunders said he would ask for state funding, but was not optimistic about the outcome.
"I personally can't see us (State Government) having that sort of money," he said.
"I won't just walk away from it - I will be trying for it.
"It'd be a great injection for Burrum Heads and I'll be discussing it with ministers, but I don't think we have the money."
Fraser Coast Mayor Gerard O'Connell said the council supported the scuttling.
But he did not commit to funding the project.
"While council has not been formally requested for a grant or to support a grant application for the project, we are more than willing to send letters of support and lobby for the project," he said.
"I can confirm that council has not set aside funding for the project in the current budget."
Regional Dive Wreck Advisory Group chairman Scott Rowe said the funding would be sought from 2016/17 Local Government budgets.
"We would require all three levels of government support to secure the vessel," he said.
"The hard discussions haven't been had yet."
If the Federal Government grant the heavy-lift ship to the Wide Bay, it would be a year long process to prepare it for sinking.