Wisconsin Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen recently received three court judgments against Christopher Elbe and his company, Golded E Real Estate, LLC after Elbe allegedly violated state laws related to wetlands and navigable waters.
Elbe allegedly altered Erler Creek, a navigable tributary of a branch of the Milwaukee River, by straightening and dredging it in April 2011. He also allegedly dredged another navigable tributatry of the river in October 2012 and also allegedly illegally discharged the dredge material into a wetland area.
Golden E Real Estate also owns a property that has a conservation easement that is owned by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. As part of the easement, the property owner is not allowed to make any changes to the water or the landscape.
In July 2013, Golden E Real Estate allegedly dumped fill on nearly an acre of the property and excavated a portion of a ridge, which violated the easement.
As part of the judgments approved by the Dane County Circuit Court, the Sheboygan County Circuit Court and the Washington County Circuit Court, Elbe and his real estate company will pay $60,000 in damages, fines and court costs in addition to restoring the wetland area.