Call to sign on for ship wreck support
A PETITION has been launched to demonstrate the level of community support for the military dive wreck HMAS Tobruk to be sunk in Wide Bay waters as a means of attracting more tourists to the region.
Principle petitioner Ed Gibson said the Wide Bay Burnett Regional Dive Wreck Advisory Group was asking local residents, business owners and tourists to sign the petition, which would be tabled in the House of Representatives by Federal Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt.
With a number of Wide Bay business already agreeing to host the petition, Mr Gibson said any other businesses or organisations wishing to collect signatures could obtain posters and a copy of the petition by telephoning 4152 0744.
"Advisory Group members will be out in force on November 7 and 8 for a weekend of action, collecting signatures at markets and shopping centres across the region," he said.
"Tourism operators need another water-based attraction that will keep boats in the water during the months that humpback whales and loggerhead turtles are not present.
"It is estimated a military dive wreck would contribute between $1 million and $4 million each year to the local economy. This would be a great rate of return on a one-off estimated investment of approximately $6 million."
Bundaberg Aqua Scuba owner Julian Negri welcomes the move and will have a copy of the petition in his shop for likeminded people to show their support.
"A wreck of that sort of size and historical significance would attract a lot more people here and those people would not only pay money to go out for a dive they would stay at accommodation, go out to restaurants and do other tourist attractions that are here like the Rum Distillery, the turtles and other trips like the Lady Musgrave Tours, it's a lot more income for the region," he said.
"The wrecks make a really good habitat for the marine life and this provides and extra reef for them to live around and this supports an eco system."
You can sign the petition at these locations:
Ulton Chartered Accountants Bundaberg
Bundaberg Aqua Scuba
Office of Stephen Bennett MP
Office of Keith Pitt MP
Childers Eco Lodge