December 2015    
Harrison Industries Receives Chamber's Large Business Award

The Harrisons accepting the Poinsettia Award.
The Ventura Chamber of Commerce honored Harrison Industries as its 2015 "Large Business of the Year" at the 19th annual Poinsettia Awards on Dec. 10 at the Ventura Beach Marriott.

Harrison, a Whisenhunt Communications client for 25 years, was cited for its top-notch trash and recycling services to more than 90,000 residents and businesses in Ventura, Camarillo, Thousand Oaks, Ojai, Fillmore, Carpinteria and unincorporated areas of Ventura County. Harrison was among the first trash-hauling companies in the state to offer residential customers with comprehensive curb-side service and its commercial customers with innovative recycling programs, including Construction & Demolition.

(Front) Mike and Lynn Harrison. (Back, L to R) George Harrison, Nan Drake, Donnie and Danny Harrison
As a result of Harrison's recycling programs, its client cities have among the highest waste diversion rates in the state, with Ventura leading the way at 74 percent.

The Ventura Chamber also recognized Harrison for its community involvement, whether it is providing free trash and recycling service at a number of community events in Ventura, or making cash donations to cultural and charitable organizations. Three generations of Harrison family members work for the company and several serve on boards of local nonprofits, community service groups and Chambers of Commerce.

Whisenhunt Communications nominated Harrison for the award and also nominated the company when it won the Ventura Chamber's Poinsettia Award for Environmental Excellence in 2012.

Congratulations to Harrison Industries from all of us at Whisenhunt Communications!
Attorney Dennis LaRochelle Receives Civility Award; is also Honored for CAL-ABOTA Service

Ventura County attorney Dennis LaRochelle was honored earlier this month with the Civility Award from the California Coast Chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) at the organization's holiday dinner meeting at the Santa Barbara Biltmore. Ventura County Superior Court Judge Fred Bysshe presented the award, which reads, "The California Coast Chapter of ABOTA does hereby confer upon Dennis LaRochelle The 2015 Civility Award For Having Demonstrated The Highest Degree of Professionalism And Civility, With High Moral and Ethical Standards." 

The Civility Award is one of the top honors that can be bestowed upon a member of ABOTA because it demonstrates that the recipient has achieved a high degree of respect among his or her peers for professionalism, honesty and integrity. 

LaRochelle was also honored in November with an Award of Appreciation for his yearlong service as President of CAL-ABOTA. LaRochelle's duties as president will end Dec. 31 and then he will remain a member of the Executive Committee as Past President. CAL-ABOTA is the state chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, a national association of plaintiff and defense jury trial lawyers. ABOTA's goals are to preserve the right to a jury trial in civil cases (guaranteed by the 7th Amendment) and to enhance civility, integrity and dignity among litigators. 

LaRochelle is a partner in the Oxnard law firm of Arnold LaRochelle Mathews VanConas & Zirbel, LLP.  Visit the firm's website,, to read the latest news about the law firm and its attorneys.
Island Packers Cruises for Parade of Lights, Caroling & Whale Watching 

Ventura Parade of Lights: Friday, December 18 & Saturday, December 19. Passengers can be a part of the boat parade ending with an onboard view of the fireworks display at 8 p.m. or just cruise and view the parade and fireworks. The fare is $34 per adult, $31 per senior (55+) and $24 per child (12 and under). Discount rates available for groups of 10+. 

One-Hour Caroling Cruises: Passengers can sing along with the crew or just relax and admire the decorated homes and boats in the Ventura Keys. 6:30-7:30 p.m. Hot and cold beverages and items from the snack bar are available for purchase. Cruises are December 9, 11, 15, 16, 17, 20, 21, 22 and 23. The fare is $16 per adult, $13 per senior (55+), and $10 per child.  

Whale Watching Excursions: December 26-April marks the official start of the gray whale migration. Regular trips are scheduled through mid-April 2016. Departure times are listed daily on the Island Packers website. 

Info, reservations & gift certificates: or 642-1393. 

Gold Coast Recycling, Cities Celebrate 25th Anniversary 

Gold Coast Recycling & Transfer Station, established in 1990 to help local cities and the County of Ventura meet state mandates to cut the amount of trash they send to landfills in half, held a 25th anniversary celebration on Nov. 19.

Gold Coast Recycling and business partner Harrison Industries honored the cities they serve - Ventura, Thousand Oaks, Camarillo, Ojai, Fillmore and Carpinteria as well the County of Ventura - with Certificates of Appreciation during the event at the 75,000-square-foot facility in Ventura.

George Harrison, general manager of Gold Coast Recycling, presented certificates of appreciation to representatives of the cities, chambers and communities Harrison serves for helping the communities exceed the trash diversion goals of California Assembly Bill 939, passed in 1989.

Working in conjunction with Harrison Industries, Gold Coast Recycling established a three-barrel curbside program for trash, recycling and green waste for residents and a white recycling bin program for businesses as well as roll-off and Construction & Demolition programs for both businesses and residents. Gold Coast Recycling processes over 90,000 tons of recyclable materials each year.

Government officials presenting Gold Coast Recycling with certificates of congratulations included State Senator Hannah Beth Jackson, Assemblywoman Jacqui Irwin, Ventura County Supervisors Peter Foy and Kathy Long, and city council members from the cities it serves. Representatives of the offices of Congresswoman Julia Brownley, State Senator Fran Pavley and Assemblyman Das Williams also presented certificates of congratulations. 

In the future Harrison Industries and Gold Coast Recycling will be adding green and food waste recycling bins for its business customers, in compliance with California Assembly Bill 1826, which takes effect in 2016. AB 1826 is designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions, reduce the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers, and create a source of green energy.

What's New at Ventura 
Harbor Village

The Greek has a new name, new menus, and new updates. The Greek at the Harbor is now The Greek Mediterranean Steak & Seafood, and is introducing new menu items as well as lounge and group dining areas both indoors and outdoors. Owners Lynn and Makis Mikelatos freshened up the entrees and interiors after their Mediterranean travels.
Brophy Bros. Clam Bar & Restaurant views from the balcony are better than ever with a new awning that allows diners to enjoy the patio year-round.
Blue Water Boutique has combined with Barefoot Boutique serving customers better with an efficient one-stop shop.
Wild Local Seafood Co. plans to open its doors this winter with the company's first "brick and mortar" sustainable seafood market in California, located at Ventura Harbor Village. It's all about sustainable fishing practices for this award-winning fish and seafood company led by Captain Ben Hyman of Santa Barbara. Hyman has almost 20 years of experience working on commercial fishing vessels for a wide variety of fresh fish and seafood. The new establishment will be almost 2,000 square feet and will be one of the state's only sustainable seafood markets of its kind. The seafood market will be phase one, with a bistro and wine tasting bar planned to open in the future, featuring seafood, wine, fruits and vegetables from local farmers.
Copa Cubana will open in 2016. This new waterfront restaurant and nightclub plans to offer Cuban-American fusion cuisine, classic favorites, a full bar and live entertainment. 
Milano's Italian Restaurant will have a new expansion of the bar to host Happy Hour and Specialty Drinks. This new bar will be adjacent to outside patio that will feature a new fireplace dining area.
The Parlor introduces a new pet-friendly PAWlor doggie menu, so you and your pooch can dine seaside overlooking the boats in the Harbor. 
Boatyard Café has expanded its service of breakfast and lunch to feature a Dinner Menu on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, along with their iconic fisherman's bar. 
Check Out the LA Times Article Detailing Ventura Water's Conservation Success

Kudos to Ventura Water for being featured in an article the Los Angeles Times on Nov. 14 titled, "How did some of California's biggest water savers cut even more? By getting creative." 

The article discussed Ventura Water's successful efforts to boost water conservation by tackling the issue on a number of fronts, including the agency's popular "Dirty Car" and "Hey Ventura, What's Your Shower Song" campaigns, the use of social media and radio, the agency's innovative Water: Take 1 short film contest, and by joining forces with supportive local businesses, among other efforts. Read the article here.

Ventura Water offers free water conservation aids and on-site commercial and residential water surveys to help customers save water. Use the New Water Calculator tool to help schedule your irrigation timers more efficiently:  Learn more by clicking hereContact Customer Care at or call 667-6500 to schedule a water conservation survey.
Celebrate the National Park
Service Centennial with
Channel Islands National Park 

Throughout 2016, the National Park Service and Channel Islands National Park celebrate the park service's 100th anniversary by encouraging visitors to "Find Your Park." The National Park Service and National Park Foundation encourage everyone to visit one of the 407 national parks, including the Channel Islands, to learn how the park service's recreation, conservation and historic preservation programs positively impact our communities. 

SAVE THE DATE: On the actual birthday of the National Park Service, August 25, 2016, the Ventura Port District will host a special party at Ventura Harbor Village featuring an outdoor screening of a new documentary, "West of the West: Tales from California's Channel Islands," which explores the islands' human history. 

Every month during 2016, the Channel Islands National Park will host a free educational lecture at the Robert J. Lagomarsino Visitor Center at Ventura Harbor, 1901 Spinnaker Dr., as part of the annual "From Shore to Sea" lecture series. Topics will touch on recreation, history, science and more. To learn more about this series, visit the park website at

Channel Islands National Park also will be featured at a number of events at the Museum of Ventura County. The include a special event on Feb. 28 centered around Scott O'Dell's famous 1960 novel, "Island of the Blue Dolphins;" a 36th anniversary celebration for the Channel Islands National Park on March 6; and a "World Oceans Day" celebration on June 5. Each event will feature themed speakers and kids activities, and admission to the museum on those days will be free. 

"Junior Ranger Day" on April 16 and "Kids to Parks Day" on May 21 will feature events for children. 

Visit the National Park Service's centennial website at and the Channel Islands National Park's website at
Attorney Robert N. Kwong
Makes Presentation at CEQA Training Workshop

A to Z Law attorney Robert N. Kwong was among the expert speakers at a training workshop held at Ventura City Hall on Nov. 6 titled, "2015 CEQA Essentials: An Introduction & Intermediate Level Training Workshop." 

Thirty-two people attended this event hosted by the Association of Environmental Professionals (AEP), which provided attendees a basic understanding of the fundamentals of CEQA, the state guidelines and case studies. CEQA - the California Environmental Quality Act - requires state and local agencies to identify significant environmental impacts of their actions and to avoid or mitigate those impacts, if possible.

Here's how attendee Mitchel Morrison, an environmental scientist/planner with Envicom Corp. in Westlake Village, described Kwong's presentation, in a written review of the workshop for the AEP Channel Islands Chapter: "Mr. Kwong brought fresh clarity to CEQA, simplifying the essence of the statue with four central concepts: information, mitigation, justification, and litigation. He stressed CEQA not only protects the environment but discloses ongoing environmental protection to the public." 
Ventura Water Holds Meeting on the Santa Clara River Estuary  

Ventura Water hosted a stakeholders meeting and workshop last month for community members interested in learning more about how the city plans to provide a sustainable water future for Ventura residents, while addressing the complex interests surrounding the Santa Clara River Estuary.

In December of 2011, the Ventura City Council voted on a final settlement agreement and consent decree with Heal the Bay, and Wishtoyo Foundation/Ventura Coastkeeper to resolve legal actions associated with the City's Reclamation Facility discharges of tertiary treated water into the Santa Clara River Estuary. In this agreement, the City agreed to further investigate and determine how best to use this water resource for the future while preserving the Santa Clara River Estuary's natural habitat.

By the end of this year, the City must propose a project or projects that would eliminate 100 percent of the discharge from the existing Reclamation Facility to the estuary. 

The stakeholder meeting included a tour of the new VenturaWaterPure "potable reuse" demonstration facility and then convened at City Hall for a workgroup. Regulators, members of environmental groups, recreation users, ratepayers and potential water reuse customers attended to learn about the activities conducted this year regarding the Santa Clara River Estuary. Following the welcome and introductions, Carollo Engineers gave a progress update on estuary monitoring activities conducted to date, 100 percent diversion as defined by the Consent Decree, the estimated range of costs for 100 percent diversion, and brine disposal options and costs. (Brine refers to the waste by-products of potable reuse and desalination that requires proper treatment and/or disposal.) 

Looking ahead, more data will be collected and compiled for the estuary and the potable reuse pilot study. The next stakeholder workshop will be held mid-year in 2016.  

To review the PowerPoint presentation given at the Nov. 3 meeting, click here
Issue: 75
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Make Your Holidays 'Greener' with These Easy Tips From Harrison Industries 

Christmastime and the holiday season are joyous times for families and friends to get together, but the season also creates mountains of unnecessary waste. It's estimated that an extra million tons of waste each week is generated between Thanksgiving and New Year's. Enough ribbon is thrown away - about 38,000 miles - to tie a bow around the entire earth! 

With a little thought and planning, you can make your holidays a little "greener." Harrison Industries wants to help everyone have a "greener" holiday season. Try the following:
  • Give gift certificates, tickets, memberships or services, or make a donation to a favorite charity.
  • Do not use wrapping paper! Wrap gifts in reusable paper or cloth bags, or be creative and use hand towels, tablecloths, napkins, fabric scraps, maps, craft paper, newspaper or old posters.
  • Consider consumable gifts. Visit your local farmers markets or growers for ideas.
  • Consider a compost or worm bin for the garden enthusiast.
  • Give gifts such as T-shirts, backpacks, hats and socks made from recycled-content materials.
  • Save gas and support our local merchants by buying locally.
  • When shopping, bring your own reusable bags. 
  • Use LED holiday lights for safety and energy savings. Solar-powered holiday lights are also available.
  • For holiday parties, put a marked paper bag, box or special container for recycling next to a trash container for your guests' convenience.
  • Be sure to recycle aluminum, glass and plastic containers; metal cans; food boxes; cardboard; gift wrap (except foil or cellophane); gift boxes; greeting cards and catalogs. (No Styrofoam or plastic bags, please.)
  • Email holiday cards.
  • Check with local mail centers to see if they will take boxes and packing material for reuse.
  • Recycle your Christmas tree in the yard waste cart after removing all decorations and stands. Large trees may need to be cut to fit into the cart.
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Client News In This Issue
Harrison Industries
A to Z Law
Island Packers
Gold Coast Recycling & Transfer Station
Ventura Harbor Village
Ventura Water
Ventura Port District - Channel Islands National Park
A to Z Law
Ventura Water

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