Searsport Shores Campground owner Steve Tanguay brought two concerns to the Searsport Board of Selectmen Tuesday night — one regarding what might happen to the town’s mil rate if a proposed propane operation comes to town and the other concerning what he described as an unusual amount of propane inspections at his business.

Tanguay, who addressed the board during the portion of the meeting that is reserved for public comment, read a portion of a news story about Searsmont’s rising mil rate that appeared in the April 12 edition of The Journal.

Tanguay noted how Searsmont Assessor Jim Murphy explained to taxpayers during the previous meeting a pipeline and accompanying pump station that was constructed in town a few years ago is now to blame for a mil rate that is expected to jump from $18.30 per thousand of valuation up to $21 per thousand of valuation.

Searsmont residents had initially benefited from a drop in the mil rate after the pipeline was built, Tanguay said. But as Murphy explained in The Journal article, the tax increase is now imminent because state valuations have caught up with the new development, meaning Searsmont residents must now pay a greater share of the school and county budgets.

Tanguay said he is concerned Searsport residents might suffer a similar fate if a proposed 22.7-million-gallon, liquefied petroleum gas storage tank is constructed at Mack Point. The project proposal from Colorado-based DCP Midstream was first publicized at a series of informational meetings in late 2010, and has since been at the heart of a regional debate about bringing more business — and by extension, hopes for tax relief and jobs — versus concerns about safety and how such a development might hurt the local tourism industry.

Tuesday night, Tanguay advised selectmen to look to Searsmont to see what Searsport’s future might look like if the tank project comes to fruition.

“With the tank project coming to town, we may need to plan for those coming expenses,” said Tanguay.

Continuing to quote the article about Searsmont’s situation, Tanguay said the town is now picking up about $28 million of the total $40 million value of the pipeline because under the law, the town is limited to taxing 70 percent of the full market value.

“It’s what many of us are concerned about,” Tanguay said, adding that a need for a professional fire department may also add to expenses the town might need to take on if the tank is constructed.

Tanguay also expressed concern about workers who might move to town for construction jobs associated with the project, as those jobs are only expected to last for the time it will take to build the tank. According to previously published reports, the project could be completed in 18 months. Once those jobs go away, Tanguay said those workers have already become a part of the local community and may become dependent on state and local services.

“Because there are no jobs for them,” said Tanguay.

In March, residents rejected a proposed moratorium on all LPG-related projects, a move that was designed to create an independent review committee charged with studying town regulations and ordinances to ensure they were adequate for maintaining the safety of residents.

Later in the meeting, Selectman Doug Norman asked Town Manager James Gillway if the town could further investigate the question of whether the town would need to beef up its fire department if DCP Midstream comes to town.

“I heard [that requirement] comes from the state,” said Norman.

Gillway said he has yet to see a formal project application from DCP Midstream, but that he has discussed the potential need for more fire protection with Planning Board Chairman Bruce Probert.

“I have made Bruce [Probert] aware of it, that that’s one of the things we may have to look at,” said Gillway.

Selectman Roland LaReau said he thought perhaps the requirements regarding increased fire protection might come from the federal level rather than the state.

The second concern Tanguay brought to the board was about what he said were an unusual number of visits and inspections his campground has had from the Maine State Fuel Board this year. He said the latest of four total drop-ins by the board regarding the campground’s on-site propane filling station occurred earlier that day, and added that the visits had been prompted by complaints from Fire Chief Jim Dittmeier.

Tanguay said upon talking with the MSFB inspector about the issue Tuesday, he learned that it was “the only visit that’s ever been called for like this in the state.”

“Our propane filling station is completely compliant,” said Tanguay.

Tanguay said there was some confusion about the campground’s existing permit due to an entry on the MSFB website that listed an expired permit, and that listing related to their decision to go with another propane vendor in 2006.

“We went with another vendor and there was a new permit put in place,” said Tanguay.

Tanguay said he talked with MSFB officials about having the old listing removed from the website because “it creates confusion.”

Normally, Tanguay said, MSFB would come to the campground to do an inspection of the propane filling station once a year.

“It does make you feel like you’re being targeted,” Tanguay told the board.

Since the proposed tank project was made public in 2010, Tanguay and his wife, Searsport Shores co-owner Astrig Tanguay have been vocal in their opposition to such a development in town because they fear it may adversely impact their business and others in the region that are also dependent on tourism. The Tanguays have been mainstays at many local events in which a coalition of residents and businesspeople known as Thanks But No Tank staged protests and organized public meetings to raise awareness about safety concerns about the proposed LPG storage tank, and how such a development might impact tourism.

Dittmeier, in turn, has been criticized in recent months for airing his opinions about the tank proposal on Facebook, in which he publicly stated his support for the project as well as his disagreement with those who have expressed opposition to it, according to Journal archives.

As of 4:30 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, April 18, Dittmeier had not returned a call from The Journal seeking his comments on the situation involving Searsport Shores. In past-published Journal articles, Dittmeier stressed he was making such comments as a Searsport taxpayer and not in his capacity as fire chief.

Tanguay encouraged those who are still concerned about safety at the campground to contact the police department and inquire about the number of calls police have had to respond to at the campground during its years of operation.

“Talk to the police department, we keep a very clean operation where we are,” said Tanguay, who also reiterated the safety of the existing propane filling station at the campground. “… We have the most up-to-date, safest system we can possibly have.”

LaReau asked Tanguay exactly how many times the MSFB has visited his campground since the beginning of the year, and Tanguay said the first visit occurred in January, followed by a second drop-in in February. Tanguay said Tuesday’s visit from the MSFB brought the number of visits up to four.

Tanguay closed by offering an open request to anyone in town, including the fire department, to bring any concerns they may have about the campground operation straight to him.

“Don’t bring the whole state down on a person,” said Tanguay.