Saturday, March 5, 2016

I'm running for Selectman

Hello fellow citizens of Winchester, my name is Robert Leustek. I wanted to introduce myself to those of you who do not know me yet.
I have owned my home on Back Ashuelot road for 10 years. Many who walk and travel Back Ashuelot have seen my beehives and the improvements I have been making to the property, they have noticed the cleanups I try to do regularly along the road and many have met my pet goose Lexi.
I do construction for a living. Currently I am renovating a house in Hinsdale. I also plow Breed and Nelson Roads out of the Stoddard barn. My wife and I have been attending the Select Board meetings religiously now since the early summer. We have also joined the RED committee and are working on setting up a Farmers Market in the center of town to begin in June and run to October every Saturday.
I have heard numerous complaints from the residents about the town and have been urged to run for the Select Board by many. Honestly I was planning to run next year as I am starting a garden to market business and wanted to focus on that this year but the urging by so many residents convinced me to run now. I have a few ideas I would like to work towards that you can all read at and Robert Leustek for Selectman on Facebook. I also enjoy hearing from all residents about their thoughts.
I would like to work hard to reduce the burden of taxes that we all have to bear, however as Selectman I must follow the will of the voters. As Jack Marsh likes to say at the meetings “The voters are the bosses not the other way around”. This requires you all to come out and vote next Tuesday March 8th and make your voice heard.
A NO vote on the town budget gives us a lower budget for this year while a yes vote is I believe something like $100,000 higher.
A no vote on the school budget is $1,000,000 higher than a YES vote because the school board is trying to make cuts this year.
Please read my comments on Article 21 (The town housing standards ordinance) on my site. It is my opinion, after 15 years of studying economics, that continuing with the housing ordinance will drown us all in taxes in the coming years and bringing great hardship to us all especially the poor and elderly of our community. I ask you to read my statement on my website and vote NO on article 21.
In the end if you give me your support and elect me I must do what the voters want, as my opinions do not matter, only what the towns people vote for.
Finally I ask you to start attending town meetings and get involved in town committees. It will take all of us to better our town into the future or I expect the complaints to continue about the small few who seem to run the town.
I would like to meet all of you. Tomorrow, March 5th, I will be at Big Daddy’s RV for a sign painting to oppose the pipeline from 10am till mid-afternoon and then I hope to be at the town dump to meet more people. My contact info is on please get in touch with me and I will try my best to meet with you in person if you like.
Thank You
Robert Leustek


Anonymous said...

I want to be honest and bring forth a concern that I have been presented with regarding your running for office. I have been told you and your wife are active radical Free Staters. I have read that Free Staters want to infiltrate local governments and then state government to achieve their agendas. Can you respond to what that means??? Farmers markets, etc sound great but what I have read about the Free State Project in NH is negative. I am not judging you just concerned what that means to Winchester should you be elected as well as any other follower of your mission.

Maria K said...

Thanks for everything that you and your wife are doing to improve Winchester. I have seen you picking up trash and making this place a cleaner one. I also appreciate the effort for a local farmers market, instead of people having to travel to hinsdale or keene to get local goods. I feel that you and your wife will continue to benefit this community. Keep it up!

Freedom always has a price said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

How does political affiliation effect us at the local level? I always though the local government was non-partisan? Honestly, as long as the elected officials are acting in the town's best interest and they act based on our votes, then I really don't give two shakes. If he decided to run outside of this level then that would be pertinent.

Carolyn said...

I just want to comment that I have known Robert and Gloria since they have moved here and they have been nothing but helpful and kind and caring to their friends and neighbors and care about the the future generation as well as the people struggling to keep a home in this town. They have never pushed any of this Free Stater view stuff on anyone in my presence but I will inquire more about it the next time they come help me work on fixing my home for no other reason than to be helpful to a friend in need. No one should be judged on their beliefs..but on their actions. Thank you Rob and Glo

Robert Leustek said...

Dear Anonymous and others,
Sorry, I would have replied sooner but we were at Big Daddy’s RV painting signs about the Pipeline.

First and foremost, I consider myself a Granite-Stater and a resident of Winchester.

That said there are many reasons that we moved to New Hampshire. We have lifelong friends that live in this state. We have spent many years camping here and enjoying this beautiful state. We originally had planned, with my cousin and his wife, to move to Vermont, in the Brattleboro area but were fortunate enough to find Winchester instead over 10 years ago. They in fact did find a property in Halifax VT.
I am an individual and I speak for myself. My party affiliation is Undeclared and this position, by the way, is Non-Partisan.

As I am mostly in agreement with Jack Marsh and Ben Kilanski if you consider them radical, then I guess I am too. As well, if elected I am one vote amongst 5. I do not understand what I would be infiltrating or taking over. My goal is to do the right thing for the people of this town. My plan for this town is to represent the voters and residents and anything that affects them affects me also. I pledge to be fiscally conservative. My agenda is my own and it is what I wrote on my web page and Facebook page. It is far from secret; it is my platform. I also pledge to listen to the concerns of my fellow townspeople and include their concerns as part of the basis for any decisions I may make.

If you would like to judge me, meet with me, talk with me, get to know me for who I am and not because of a perceived affiliation.
Please feel free to contact me any time.

Best regards, Robert Leustek

Jane said...

I met Robert and Gloria less than a month after I moved to town. They have been the most helpful people I think I've had the honor of building a friendship with. They do nothing but help me, all I ever have to do is ask. I've seen them helping their neighbors countless times. I've offered them money for helping me in the past, but every time they turn it down. I've offered them money for gas...for the times they've gone places or done things for me, but every time they turn it down. Having met them is, honestly, the greatest privilege I've had since I moved to Winchester. Only bigoted ignorant people judge others based on groups. That's not how I was raised. Caring, generous, helpful people like Robert and Gloria...could help make Winchester the greatest town in Cheshire County.

Morons awake said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Jim said...

The Free State Project Agenda:

I will exert the fullest practical effort toward the creation of a society in which the maximum role of government is the protection of individuals’ rights to life, liberty, and property.

...nothing more

...nothing less.

Anonymous said...

9:04PM is way out of line, but we have come to expect that from a few people.

the Winchester Informer said...

We have removed several comments and disallowed several more in response to a personal attack on Mr. % Mrs. Leustek for their presumed personal beliefs, which has absolutely nothing to do with this man's running for office. These comments, though submitted under different nom de plume have been written by the same person that seeks to discredit someone for reasons of their own and will not be tolerated.

While we allow that everyone is entitled to their own opinions we will not allow someone to continue in an attempt to degrade someone simply because they don't agree with that persons presumed personal beliefs or affiliations.

There is an element in this town that will say and do anything and everything they can to discredit anyone who sees the light of day and bucks the establishment of this town that has made it their personal vault. There are people in power in this town that have made it their lifelong ambition to leech of it's citizens and enjoy the fruits of their labor while others have lost their homes and livelihoods because of the decisions that have made to continue lining their pockets.

We have seen good, honest people come forward time and time again and run for office or volunteer for open positions in town government, only to have their names smeared and lies told about them in order to continue the status quo. All you need to do is open your eyes, poke your heads out of the sand, read a little, look around and see the same names over and over again and the same results year after year .. more spending, more law suits, more people losing their homes, higher taxes, more insider hirings and new positions being made to employ more family members, continuing changes to our zoning laws to allow more unsavory and questionable businesses to come into town or to circumvent existing laws that have protected the town and it's people for years.

When are you people going to open your eyes to the real problems affecting all of you and not the made up ones coming out of the mouths of those who do not want change?

We would like to offer an apology to the Leusteks for allowing comments that attempted to discredit both of them and while this blog does not endorse any candidate, party or affiliation we would strongly suggest people be judged by how they act and what they say; not by some preconceived notions submitted on an open blog by someone with an obvious agenda.

If you have questions for Mr. Leustek, we would suggest you contact him directly, he has in good faith, provided his contact information. If you attempt to post comments to smear him or his family, they will not be allowed, nor will we allow this conduct about any other candidate running for town office

Remember, President John F. Kennedy was smeared during his run for office for the preconceived notion that as him being a Catholic, the church was going to take over the government .. didn't see that happen, did you?

the Winchester Informer said...

If you disagree with our position to remove personal attacks and disallow the same, send us an email with your concerns. Attempts to continue along this line will not be tolerated or published .. There is no justifiable excuse for this kind of behavior from anyone

the Winchester Informer said...

You can continue in your attempts to be a disruptive puppet for the Town's so called elite ED; but you won't be seen nor heard from on this blog. You were warned in the past for you attacks on people running for office with different views from yours and theirs. Go post on your own blog where like minded individuals gather to belittle others and crow.

Anonymous said...

I was afraid this would happen but I wanted Robert to have the forum to express himself ( as he did) to clarify what raises its ugly head when the topic arises as it has in the past. I am glad he did and did so in so eloquent a way. I also am glad any negative blogs were removed and support of who and what the Leustiks have done here in town was posted. My original intent by asking the question was to offer him the place to address this matter and squelch the negative. I am glad the Informer did do that and will continue to do that. Robert was unknown to many in town and this was an attempt to give him the chance to do what he did and express what he will do as a Selectperson. I hope his words and other testimonies posted will stop any negativity. There was no judgement in the original question only asking him to speak to the issue and give him th eopportunity to address it rather than have people pre judge. It was not the words of a "good old boy" trying to undermine his candidacy. He has my vote!!!!!

Robert Browne said...

I know the Leusteks and one thing that can say about them, both, is that they are anything but radical. They go to town meetings and participate in local events that benefit the town and I've noticed that Robert has won the respect of many of the local officials but necessarily all, certainly not that set of the "old guard" that abuses their positions of power and feels threatened by a new face with new ideas. When asked at the "meet the candidates" meeting, the other night, how he felt about the pipeline, Mr. Leustek replied that he was against it because he doesn't believe it's good for the town and its property owners but that, as a selectman, he would respond with the will of the voters, and not with his personal beliefs. That doesn't sound very radical or agenda driven, to me.
I know him to be against government waste and overreach but, again, that doesn't make him radical. At the most, it makes him conservative (but I wouldn't want to label him).
This town needs some new blood with fresh ideas, something it obviously hasn't had in some time.

Anonymous said...

My advise to Robert is take a view of Winchester on Google maps. Our lands have been ravaged and plundered by outsiders, scaring the land with many gravel pits, junk yards, racetracks and other poorly managed business. Our lands have been procured by special interest people, the states, local conservation committees and depriving us of taxation dollars. One third of our town’s lands is in conservation use. Some 30 properties are town owned by the town that are tax exempt and need to be placed back on the tax roll. Many many town employees, selectmen and friends of these people are enjoying reevaluated property taxes called “abatement” given to themselves by themselves.

My question to Robert is, Why would anyone be against a possible business coming to town that will invest in the town, that would lower our heating cost to school, town hall, police dept or the library or possibly build a generating electric gas plant in one of our many gravel pits while offering cheap energy to draw new businesses in town. I can already see your going to be influenced by a small group of greenies like the one’s against the pipeline or years ago it was the Clamshell Alliance who in the past fought Seabrook and it is cost all of us dearly in higher energy cost. The same one’s fought the hydro plant in Northfield, Vernon Vt while delaying and costing all of us.

You have lost my vote and go ahead and stand with Big Daddy and pipeline people. Like while your at Big Daddy’s ask he to clean up his eye sore of a business and these same people fought Dunkin Donuts?

sees right through you said...

If you think Kinder Morgan is going to invest in this town you really are misleading and very ignorant of the facts of the whole pipeline fiasco. Kinder Morgan is in southwest NH for a couple of very good reasons, ignorant gullible people and the path of least resistance. Tell me anonymous, what is the shortest distance between 2 places? Why would a frugal business savvy company want to spend an extra billion dollars or more constructing a meandering pipeline that winds itself all over the map to get from point A Pennsylvania to point B some place on the coast in eastern, Massachusetts for distribution outside of the country. I'll tell you why and it's not to improve anything for us in Winchester or the citizens of NH as a whole. It's to be able to get us electric rate payers to pay for it all, period. You can expect to see your electric bills climb higher than Gardner Mountain if this project gets approved.
You complain about the destruction of our town by outsiders, of gravel pits and race tracks and junk yards; well where were you when this stuff was happening? How come you didn't raise your voice then and do something to protect the lands from being ravaged as you say? Me thinks you are just a rabblerouser trying to stir up crap for the sake of seeing your ramblings in print. Oh, and who cares that we didn't get a foolish doughnut shop on the corner of 2 very busy roads which would have created a safety issue as well as other hazards just so you could satisfy your sweet tooth. Poor anonymous, you must have been devastated when you read the news.
You talk of businesses coming to town bringing jobs and tax revenue, where are they? Nearly every single new business that has been allowed to come and operate here has never lived up to the promises it made during permitting meetings, not one. They all bring in their own people to run and fill the payrolls; unless you count the Mitchell quarry which has destroyed the way of life for people living out in that area, that hired 2 of Beaman's relatives recently to make sure they got their expansion approval.
You're dreaming if you think you're ever going to see lots of business come to this town, look around, why do you think they've all gone elsewhere?
Oh, I doubt very seriously Mr. Leusek is going to lose any sleep over not getting your vote. You go ahead and continue to vote for the people who have made this town what it is today.

Anonymous said...

Once again we have someone who is willing to run for selectman without a hidden agenda. He is not in anyone's back pocket. I find it refreshing and now if you will all get out and vote perhaps the town will hire employees that have the correct job experience not those that are related to the town hall. Enough of the nepotism. Please note that many of the citizens in town are struggling. They are afraid to buck the system. They need voters help in being able to stay in their homes.
Vote and help the community!

Anonymous said...

To the poster on March 6 at 2:30 you may want to look up Enron and see what they did to the southwest. Most of the players in Kinder Morgan came from there. Think of what they will do to Winchester because they think that we are local yocals and don't have brains. It's ok you can be a sheep and follow the herd!

Anonymous said...

I would like in addition to Mr. Leustek to endorse Ben Kilanski. He has lived here all his life and now is putting in tireless hours going to BOS meetings, becoming a part of the Conservation Commission and supporting the town vote to oppose the pipeline. He does his homework on any issues he works on and is dedicated to making the town a better place by going the extra mile in all he becomes involved in. He is a tireless worker and he will make a great Selectperson. Go Ben!!!! I hope all your effort and hard work pay off tomorrow at the polls.

Anonymous said...

I agree with poster March 6 2:30 PM. Your group of followers here and the Informer is trying to purge the town of it's self interest people and replace them with other self interest pipeline objectors. I believe with that person who has to said the pipeline is important for the town to grow and lower our tax burden. When the pipeline goes down Main street Winchester to Keene which would heat our school and town hall. The people that habitually expresses contrary opinions to hide the truth will climb back under their rocks. Until the next issues

sighing in disbelief said...

Your ignorance is showing ( above poster ). The proposed pipeline is not going down Main Street to Keene, where did you come up with that? The pipeline will come up through Northfield, cut over and across 78 and 119 and continue on towards Fitzwilliam and beyond. Maybe it's you that should climb back under your rock until you actually know what it is you are discussing. I also don't sere where this site is attempting to influence anyone or purge the town of how did you put it, self interest people? All I see are cold hard facts that can be easily checked and verified, something you obviously don't care about and didn't take the time to do. This is exactly why this company has decided to take a northern indirect approach instead of going in a straight line to reach their goals, ignorance and people who refuse to believe the truth.

Time to tell the truth! said...

to the above poster.....Sticks and stones will break my bones but names and faces can not hurt me~

We have been repeatedly been betrayed and getting rolled, stabbed in the back by the anti-pipeline greenies flowing us with false media adds and posts without excepting others people’s opinions. Shown by your Informer editing policy. Also with your attempts to flood us tax payers with false media lies, false innuendos and your slanders views. It is obvious opposition voices means absolutely nothing to you people and are simply attempts are used to try to influence readers perception the pipeline will kills us all and now trying to stack the selectmen office with your special interest people pipeline cohorts.

Yes my sources say the pipeline will service downtown. Like it or not!

Anonymous said...

Pipeline lovers are so misinformed!!!!! Relieve the tax burden??? Kinder Morgan has managed to get off from paying the taxes they promised everywhere along their routes. And we have been informed that property values will fall through the roof and home insurance policies will be cancelled. Our utility rates will go through the roof as we will paying for building the pipeline IF you had read the Keene Sentinel article posted here. And do you want Liberty Utilities in this town???? They damn near blew up Keene twice recently. Plus Winchester could not afford the hook up of any natural gas nor any property owner. Talk about raising taxes.... if we had to fund hooking up the school and town hall!!!! And ONE fire truck on the Warrant Article tomorrow???? What do you think it will take when there is a pipeline explosion???? Kinder Morgan is famous for those!!!! ( Why we need to fund the $15,000 to fight these former Enron execs). Wake up, read the facts not listen to Kinder Morgan BS.

Robert Browne said...

To "Time to tell the truth,"
I'm not sure who your sources are but they are very misinformed, as are you. The only source you need is Kinder Morgan, itself, who has said nothing about servicing downtown and has published a map of where they intend to put the pipeline which is, most certainly, not on Main Street and not running into Keene. It is a distribution pipeline, only, and not meant to service Winchester.
You should learn some facts instead of listening to ridiculous hyperbole.

the Winchester Informer said...

Yes, a Kinder Morgan representative has made the pitch at their presentation that they would provide a "spur line" into downtown Winchester, that would cover approximately several blocks around the Town Hall and school IF they get approved.
Now the average cost to convert your home from oil heat to gas goes something like this..

Mid-efficiency (73-83%) gas furnace, installed: Average: about $2,800; High end: $10,000

High-efficiency (90-97%) gas furnace, installed: Typically $2,500 to $6,000; possibly $7,000 to $10,000

My oil furnace is 83% efficient, so really no savings here, except maybe on cost per gallon of fuel ..

Then you have a new, gas 50-gallon hot water heater: about $600

along with the cost to dig a trench from main gas line to your house: $1,000 to $1,500, depending on distance.

and Piping from meter to gas furnace: $500 to $1,000

You'll also need to line your chimney to protect against moisture in gas furnace exhaust: $750 to $2,000 (not needed with high-efficiency systems)

Lastly you'll have to pay someone who is licensed to remove your above ground oil tank: $750 or underground oil tank: $3,000

That's a lot of expense that I guarantee most homeowners simply can't afford to do.
Now double or even triple some of those costs for apartment housing and you can see where this just isn't going to attract many landlords either.

Do you want to even venture a guess about what it would cost to convert our school and the Town Hall and Police Station and hell throw in the Library too while you are at it .. How much is taxation going to rise to cover those costs?

Wake up people you're being conned into thinking this is going to save you a few bucks when in actuality it's going to cost you dearly over many years before you see a dime of savings and who knows, maybe by the time those savings roll around fracking and the shale fields will be a thing of the past and if Kinder Morgan and the utilities companies have their way, we'll still be paying for the pipeline construction in our bills on top ..
Still so enthused about having this project come to town?

Oh and if you doubt what I am saying ( as I am sure your tunneled vision mind will )
I gleaned the info from here, among other sources...

Anonymous said...

From your advise from the two expect above, I took partial excerpts from house in part, which is just a self-help Realtor guide and estimates. No real pricing just estimates guesses. They state on their web site……..Now that you’ve made the psychological leap from an oil furnace to a gas furnace, grab your calculator and crunch the numbers. When you’ve recovered from sticker shock, subtract the tax credit the feds will give you up to $1,500—and remember the $1,120 off your yearly energy bill that the oil-to-gas leap typically reaps, and the upfront costs.

You stated, “Kinder Morgan has managed to get off from paying the taxes they promised everywhere along their routes. (good we can take their property for taxes), and we have been informed that property values will fall through the roof (by who?) and home insurance policies will be cancelled. Our utility rates will go through the roof as we will paying for building the pipeline”! Where the Hell did you get your facts there Bud on this. AS you say, I live across town and my property tax values will fall and they will cancel my home insurance. “Our utility rates will go thought the roof” “the pipeline will explode like twice in Keene. The problem in Keene was low pressure when a compressor failed to come on. You two above poster are nothing but part of the pipeline cohorts being deceiver, fabricator, prevaricator, perjurer, falsifier of the truth. Your minds are so warped you do not know where the truth starts and your lies begin. You two above posters are the liars by avoiding giving direct and honest answers or opinions that are truthful accounts by being deliberately ambiguous and misleading.

Informer …Now to prove a point you cut and past as your facts from is plagiarism. (Sorry before in my recent posting spell check changed the spelling of my word). Your own research information posted was cut and paste from and posted as your own.

Edi said...

This. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

What are you waiting for to reply, or are you waiting for your marching orders from the oil companies?

Edith said...

To the childish person who posted just above me, why do you think it's okay to come on someone else's site and act like such a jerk? Do you find it amusing to be such a disruptive and annoying person and are you sitting there hiding behind the anonymous tag smiling to yourself while reading my comments? Grow up and go post your nonsense someplace else. Some of us find the information being posted here very informative and I'm glad people are taking the time to share their thoughts and provide this information, otherwise we'd have to try to find this stuff on our own.
Thank you all who contribute to the Informer's site and thank you Informer for taking the time to create this site and bring a wide variety of topics and information to all of the people of Winchester. I know many of us are very appreciative and should post comments and words of encouragement for your efforts.


Anonymous said...

My opposition has informed people about your lies and you lost at the polls. I won!!!!

Daniel Webster and I quote, it's like rat-tat-tat like the drum. Persistence pays off...

If Informer wants to keep deleting my post you can have a one sided conversation with yourselves. HOW MUCH FUN IS THAT?

the Winchester Informer said...

We're not deleting your comments, you of many names, we just don't bother with most of the drivel ( like this ) that you keep trying to post to the blog.

Why don't you do something constructive instead of being a juvenile pest and tell all of us how exactly "you won" and just who and why you oppose the town contributing to the Pipeline Coalition (19 other towns) and also just what you and your bunch plan to do to help everyone out if all of this blows up in your face? That's what the money was earmarked for, that you and 389 others voted against.

We're all waiting with open ears ..

Robert Browne said...

"Anonymous" is a keyboard warrior who lacks the courage to use his/her own name and would never have the guts to say these things to anyone's face.
What sad, little person you are. I pity you.

Can we vote them off of the island? said...

Dear Winchester Informer,
I truly appreciate your efforts to keep townspeople informed on the issues and provide a forum for discussion.
I applaud your efforts to present opposing views on the issues while still trying to maintain civil, courteous discourse. It must seem a Herculean task at times, particularly when dealing with posts such as the one from Anonymous at 4:46PM on 3/10.
Unfortunately, to paraphrase a wise old aphorism, "You can lead a man to knowledge, but you can't make him think". It appears that no matter how the facts (based on research and previous behaviors/experience) are presented, some people will find a way to twist that to their own ideals and hopes for a way to benefit themselves. The sad end product of that is that when they are proven wrong, it's often too late to fix the problem and many others will pay the price for the obtuseness of a few.