Weeks after saying that financial savings were the main reason for changing the contractor running the ferry between Gourock and Kilcreggan, SPT are considering a £80,000 grant to the new company.
Clydelink Ltd’s tender of £174,950 per year undercut current operators Clyde Marine, whose bid was £328,320 – and Clydelink promised to build a new boat.
But now SPT are proposing to make a grant of £80,250 plus VAT to Clydelink so that the new boat can be upgraded to a class 4.
A report to the authority’s operations committee, meeting tomorrow says that ‘local mariners consider the tidal and wind conditions, particularly at Kilcreggan, to be challenging’.
The grant would cover 20% of the cost of the new vessel and SPT ‘would seek to impose legally enforceable conditions over the vessel to ensure that the vessel is used for the purposes of the service’.
Clydelink are due to take over the contract on April 1.