B & J Tree & Landscape Service. This company illegally received “hundreds of tons of salt from the City of Lake Geneva” as portrayed in the Carstensen investigation, is also known as B & J Tree Service Inc. and is now apparently running an apparently shady salting business in the Town of Geneva.

In April, 2015 the Walworth Co. Land Use and Resource Management Department issued a letter to B & J Tree Service Inc. They noted that B & J Tree Service was in violation of its approved conditional use permit (CUP). The illegal issues involved the illegal storage of salt on the property, operating an unauthorized snow plowing and salting business from the property, operating beyond the permitted six day 6:00 am to 6:00 pm operating hours, storage of materials, and equipment in non-designated areas and exceeding the number of permitted employees.

B & J’s existing conditional use permit (CUP), approved in 2005, was for a limited contractor storage yard for a landscaping, firewood and tree nursery business in a residential area.

However, B & J has repeatedly ignored the CUP and gone far beyond the approved use and hours of operation thus disrupting the residents. This caused complaints, which resulted in an investigation and the aforementioned letter from the county, in which B & J was given 30 days in which to bring its operation and use back into compliance. Not wishing to discontinue their illegal salting operation, but needing to bringing their operation and use back into compliance, B & J is requesting that the Town of Geneva ignore the residential issues and pass a new expanded conditional use permit (CUP) for them that would make their illegal operation, legal.

B & J has an operational pattern of non-compliance and ignoring zoning laws. Even their 2005 conditional use permit itself was contingent on item 18 which included discontinuing the “…. the illegal business on tax parcel JG-23-4D”. On Feb.10, 2006 an on-site inspection found that B & J was in serious non-compliance with items 2, 7, 8, 10, 17 & 18 of their 2005 conditional use permit.

Robert Castleman, Town of Geneva, Rezone 10.88 acres of A-2 to A-4 and Conditional Use for a contractor storage yard for landscaping/firewood/tree nursery on lands proposed to be zoned A- 4 (TAPE I, 3252 – TAPE II, 56) The owner has obtained a variance from the Board of Adjustment for the barn. A motion and second to modify the area down to 6.67 acres and approve was made by Supervisors Hilbelink and Kupsik. The motion carried 5 – 0. Approval of the conditional use is subject to the related rezone passing County Board and the following conditions:

  1.  Approved as per plan submitted with all additional conditions.
  2.  Storage limited to material and goods directly associated with business. Outside storage shall be limited and located as identified on the plan of operations. No outside storage areas including displays of goods shall be allowed in the required setback areas.
  3. On site hours of operation shall be from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday with hours after 6:00 p.m. for off premise work and returning of equipment to the premises seven days a week.
  4. Must meet all applicable Federal, State, County and local regulations.
  5. Outside lighting shall be shielded and directed on site.
  6. The applicant must obtain all required zoning permit approvals including a sign permit.
  7. No fill, debris, branches or leaves may be brought back and disposed of on site. No burning of waste materials shall occur on site.
  8. The applicant must obtain a County Land Disturbance Erosion Control and Stormwater Management Permit from the County Conservation Office. The applicant must submit and obtain approval of a landscaping plan from the County Conservation Office.
  9. All parking and access to the site shall meet County requirements. All parking shall be installed according to County requirements within 60 days of this approval.
  10. The project site must be kept neat, clean, and mowed.
  11. Any changes to the character, intensity or use of this site not capable of being discerned by the Land Management Department as consistent with this approval must be brought before the County Zoning Agency for additional conditional use review. Specific conditions:
  12. No general public sales allowed on premises.
  13. The number of employees shall be limited 10 plus the owner. County Zoning Agency Minutes, October 21, 2005 – 6
  14. No fill encroachment will be allowed into the wetland area or within the 100-year floodplain.
  15. The buildings shall be used for storage only. No business activities other than specified in the plan of operations may be conducted from out of the storage facilities.
  16. The Owner must record a deed restriction within 120 days of this approval indicating that the portions of A-2 property on either side of the stream may not be separated from each other. The owner must file for approval of a two lot CSM with the County Land Use and Resource Management Office within 120 days showing the A-4 rezoned area as lot 1 and the remnant A-2 on both sides of the stream as lot 2 with a restriction for no further land division of the A-2 area.
  17. The owner shall construct a fence at the south end of the storage area so commercial traffic may not access the shoreland. 
  18. This conditional use shall be valid until January 1st, 2006 and may be renewed by the County Zoning Agency upon staff verification that all conditions have be complied with and that the existing illegal business on tax parcel JG-23-4D has been discontinued, including removal of the sign painted on the building


Furthermore, the owner of B & J Tree Service Inc. has a history of illegally running unapproved and non-compliant businesses on his or his company owned business properties going back to 1994 when he was issued a non-compliance letter for running a business out of his residential property. As shown B & J’s non-complaint issues are not new but it has been their method of operation over the last 20 years and again being caught for non-compliance in April is the reason for their current CUP request.

Because of B & J’s record of repeated disregard for zoning laws and their conditional use permits, B & J should not be granted a new expanded conditional use permit. To approve the expanded conditional use permit for them, would show the same disregard for the law and residents that B & J currently does.

Furthermore, knowing that B & J has repeatedly violated and does not comply with their current conditional use permit, and still approving an expanded conditional use permit for B & J, would be to sanction their defiant behavior, to reward them for doing it and encourage others to do the same.


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Kite Lady Lake Geneva

“But I’m a vegetarian!” the Kite Lady, from Aerial Stunt Kites, exclaimed, upon being presented with an $18.99 Popeye’s huge cheese burger. She could eat the lettuce, which she did! The rest went to a visiting teenager who said “you gotta be kidding” before he hustled out of the store with the remainder.

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