Premier gets on board with HMAS Tobruk dive wreck

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt and State Member for Hervey Bay Ted Sorensen are pleased Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has ‘got on board’ with the Wide Bay military dive wreck proposal.

Yesterday in State Parliament, Mr Sorensen asked the Premier a question without notice if the government would support the HMAS Tobruk being sunk in the region to provide a tourist dive wreck.

Ms Palaszczuk told the house she believed it was “a great opportunity that the Commonwealth government has afforded the state”.

She said she understood there were a couple of sites currently under consideration, including Hervey Bay and the Gold Coast.

Mr Sorensen was given an undertaking by the Premier that she would consider it very carefully and would speak at length with her tourism minister and the Minister for State Development.

The Premier also later confirmed that the director-general had indicated to the defence department that the State Government will take part in the tender process being run by the Federal Government, and would consult with local governments.

Mr Pitt said it was great to finally see the project progressing with the State Government’s support.

“This is a unique opportunity to bring a new tourism venture to the Hinkler region, which will bring a much needed boost to the local economy and more importantly, create jobs.

“Increased tourism numbers to the region will have a flow on effect with increased spending in local restaurants, shops and businesses,” Mr Pitt said.

Mr Sorensen said the Hervey Bay’s community spirit and determination shone in Parliament yesterday.

“The Premier has shown her commitment in putting forward the expression of interest of having the HMAS Tobruk in our region as a dive wreck,” Mr Sorensen said.

“Congratulations to Scott Rowe and the Regional Development Australia – Wide Bay Burnett Group who have worked so hard on this project.

“Scott was able to unite Federal, State and local governments together, along with interested local tourism stakeholders, who could see the boost in tourism dollars, with such a project,” he said.

Information days and ship tours will be held in June in Sydney for state and territories that have registered their interest.

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