As one of the many people who lined up on the night of Feb. 29 to get my resume in for the jobs that will be offered by DCP Midstream, I was encouraged and saddened at the same time. Glad that there are potentially jobs that could put people to work; worried that the lines were long.

DCP Midstream wants to build a propane tank in our community among the other tanks that have been there for decades. It’s a good location with access to the port, rail and road.

I know you have probably heard the jobs numbers before but they are worth repeating, especially after what I have read in letters from those opposed. There will be more than 100 construction jobs and 12 to 15 permanent jobs.

That’s good news after what I saw last week and great news for Searsport, which is struggling hard as we supposedly come out of this recession. If last week was any indication, we have quite a ways to go. We are just like everyone else struggling to make ends meet during this recession, except we also have some of the highest unemployment in the state.

I had a chance to read through the economic report that the company had done after many good questions from our community. Charles Colgan is someone who is well-known in Maine and the report answered questions about tourism impacts, jobs, property tax benefits as well as answering other economic questions.

On the issue of tourism, I ask my fellow residents if they really believe another tank among the many tanks already at Mack Point will hurt tourism. I love my community, but let’s be real — we aren’t Camden, and I can’t believe the people who grew up here believe we are either. And that’s OK.

We have something that the people a few miles south of us don’t have and that’s a working port. I think it’s great to see the boats come in and out. To see goods and services delivered and a busy waterfront means people are working.

Frankly, as the report points out, South Portland has a number of tanks that can be seen across Casco Bay and that hasn’t hurt tourism one bit in Portland. But for some reason, people think it will impact tourism here. We have some antique shops and a few restaurants on Route 1 but that’s it; and really, that’s fine too.

But let’s also admit what we are — a working waterfront — and embrace it and be proud of it. Those of us who have lived here all our lives see nothing to be ashamed of around being a working waterfront. Searsport has a working waterfront heritage which shouldn’t be changed because summer residents or owners find it unfitting.

Let’s get back to those jobs. The Colgan report says there will be at least 12 jobs paying around $70,000 a year on average. That is a good wage for anyone. On top of it, there are indirect jobs which come from the service providers who will be brought into the project. It looks like Searsport and the surrounding area will have a chance to benefit when the propane tank is built.

Those who have lived here a long time know that part of the issue in all of this is Sears Island. The anti-tank group, a few of them anyway, voted in favor of full development at Mack Point, and this project would be in keeping with that vote. Now they are the same people protesting development.

They have protested a lot. They have protested the fire department saying it isn’t adequately trained, they have protested at town hall. This past weekend, on March 4, they protested in the street by waving signs and jumping in front of cars. I was trying to get through to the fire station when that happened. Now they are apparently protesting their own vote regarding development at Mack Point. They are protesting, but not creating jobs that we need year-round.

On March 10, we will face a vote on what to do about a moratorium. The moratorium would stop the project, the jobs and the property tax relief, so I will be voting “No” and urging all my family, friends and extended relatives to do the same.

It’s funny in elections how the question can be confusing, so I want to make it really clear about this vote. If you want the jobs to come here, then you have to vote “No” and stop the moratorium and the people who are trying to elect themselves mayor.

If we want a future beyond a few restaurants, a campground, and arts and crafts, it’s important to vote “No” on March 10.

AJ Koch is a resident of Searsport and a member of the town’s fire department. He was one of five candidates for two seats on the board of selectmen in municipal elections held March 6.