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Alarm Ordinance Update
X. Miscellaneous Regulations, Chapter 9.70 - Alarm Systems

Sections
  • 9.70.010 Definitions
  • 9.70.020 Permit required
  • 9.70.030 Emergency contact information required by lessee or owner
  • 9.70.040 Responsibilities of owners or lessees of alarm system
  • 9.70.050 Appeals to City Manager
  • 9.70.060 False alarm—Prevention payment
  • 9.70.070 Testing alarm
  • 9.70.080 Fees
  • 9.70.090 Limitation on Liability
  • 9.70.100 Non retroactive application of alarm usage requirements

9.70.010 Definitions

For the purpose of this chapter, the following words and phrases shall be construed as set forth in this section unless it is apparent from the context that a different meaning is intended:

“Alarm agent” means any person employed by an alarm business whose duties include altering, installing, maintaining, moving, repairing, replacing, servicing, responding to, or causing others to respond to an alarm system in or on any building, structure or facility.

“Alarm business” means a business carried on by any individual, partnership, corporation or other entity consisting of leasing, maintaining, servicing, repairing, altering, replacing, moving or installing any alarm system or causing to be leased, maintained, serviced, repaired, altered, replaced, moved or installed any alarm system in or on any building, structure or facility.

“Alarm systems” means any mechanical or electrical device which is designed or used for either the detection of fire or instruction into a building, structure or facility or both, which detection causes a local audible alarm or transmission of a signal or message, or which is used to evoke police or fire department response, whether the alarm system is monitored or not by an alarm agent. Alarm systems include, but are not limited to, direct-dial telephone devices. Devices which are not designed or used to evoke police or fire response and devices which are designed so as not to be audible, visible, or perceptible outside of the protected building, structure or facility are considered as alarm systems if an actual police or fire response occurs, irrespective of how the police or fire departments were notified. Not included in this definition are auxiliary devices installed by a telephone company to protect its system from damage or disruption by use of an alarm system, alarm systems for vehicles and smoke detectors.

“Appellant” means a person who perfects an appeal pursuant to Section 9.70.060 of this chapter.

“Audible alarm” means the sound generated by a device designed for the detection of a fire in or intrusion into a building, structure or facility, whether monitored by an alarm agent or not.

“City” means the city of Delano.

“Day” means a calendar day.

“False alarm” means the activation of an alarm system through mechanical failure, malfunction, accidental tripping, negligence, misoperation or misuse by the lessee or owner of the alarm system or his employee or agent. Mechanical failure or malfunction caused by negligent maintenance of the system is also included in this definition.

Upon failure of the police department or fire department to find any evidence of intrusion, fire or other need or cause of activating an alarm system, a rebuttable presumption of false alarm will be made. A false alarm shall not include alarms caused by malfunction of telephone line circuits or external causes beyond the control of the owner or lessee of the alarm system.

“Misuse” means the actual activation of an alarm system to summon the aid of police or fire services when the actual circumstances would otherwise prompt a routine (non-emergency) response from police or fire personnel.

“Person” means a person, firm, corporation, association, partnership, individual, organization or company.

“Smoke detector” means a device which senses visible or invisible particles of combustion and is designed to emit upon activation a sound sufficient only to provide warning to the occupants of the building, structure or facility in which such device is situated.

9.70.020 Permit required
With the exception of all U.S. Government buildings, and all State of California buildings, all lessees and owners of alarm systems and audible alarms as defined under Section 9.070.010, are required to obtain an alarm permit from the city prior to the installation of any alarm system or audible alarm within the city, whether monitored by an alarm agent or not. It shall also be a violation of this Chapter for any alarm agent or alarm business to install any such alarm system or audible alarm within the City of Delano, unless a valid alarm permit has been obtained by the lessee or owner, and a copy provided to the alarm agent or alarm business at the time of installation. The alarm agent or alarm business shall maintain a copy of the valid permit within their files. Non-monitored alarm systems or audible alarm permits will be maintained on the premise where the alarm system or audible alarm is installed for inspection by the Police Department or Fire Department.

9.70.030 Emergency contact information provided by lessee or owner
The lessee or owner of any alarm system or audible alarm system that is monitored by an alarm agent or alarm business shall provide the alarm agent or alarm business with emergency contact information for the lessee or owner, and at least two additional emergency contact numbers for a responsible party to respond, in the event of an alarm activation, upon the request of the Police Department or Fire Department. The lessee or owner of any alarm system or audible alarm system that is not monitored by an alarm agent or alarm business, shall at the time of obtaining their alarm permit, provide the police department with emergency contact information for the lessee or owner, and at least two additional emergency contact numbers for a responsible party to respond, in the event of an alarm activation, upon the request of the Police Department or Fire Department. Information that must be provided to the alarm agent, alarm business, or police department shall include, name, address, and telephone number of lessee or owner, and the names, addresses, and telephone numbers for at least two additional emergency contacts. Lessees and owners of alarm systems and audible alarm systems as defined in this Chapter are responsible for providing current contact information at all times for the lessee or owner, and all additional emergency contacts.

9.70.040 Responsibilities of owners or lessees of alarm systems
The owner or lessee of an alarm system or systems shall be required to be present at the alarm location within thirty minutes after being advised that the police or fire department have received any signal or message of alarm activation. Owners or lessees shall be responsible for taking the appropriate measures to ensure the property is secure before departure from the alarm location. In instances where the alarm location sustains damage, and police or fire department staff are not able to properly secure the property from theft, unlawful entry, or other public safety issues, and only after the owner or lessee, or other emergency contacts as required by Section 9.70.030 do not respond to an alarm location, the police or fire department may have after-hours city staff respond to the alarm location to secure the location. All costs associated with the securing of any alarm location due to the failure of the owner, lessee, or other emergency contact as listed in 09.70.030 to respond, shall be the sole responsibility of the alarm owner or lessee. A failure to respond occurs when anyone as identified in Section 9.70.030 fails to respond to the location of the alarm within 30 minutes upon notification by the police, Fire Department; or, alarm company; when the alarm owner, lessee, or other listed emergency contact doe not answer telephone calls, or when physical attempts by police or other authorized personnel to make personal contact with any of these persons fails to prompt a timely response to the location of the alarm.

9.70.050 Appeals to City Manager
If any individual disputes any action of the Chief of Police regarding this Chapter, the appellant may appeal to the City Manager by filing with the city Clerk a statement addressed to the city manager setting forth the facts and circumstances regarding the action of the Chief of Police within 15 days from the date of the notice. The city clerk shall notify the appellant in writing of the time and place set for hearing of the appeal. The city manager shall hear the appellant and the Chief of Police and shall consider all relevant evidence and shall determine the merits of the appeal. The city manager may affirm, overrule or modify the decision of the Chief of Police and his / her decision shall be final.

9.70.060 False alarm - Prevention payment
When an audible alarm, message, or signal is received by the police or fire departments that is a false alarm, the Chief of Police is authorized to demand that the owner or lessee of the alarm system initiating such audible alarm, message or signal or his/her representative disconnect the alarm system until it is made to comply with the requirements of this chapter.

B. Any person, excluding an alarm business, who maintains or has an alarm system, either by direct communication from an alarm agent or an alarm business, or by a person responding to an audible alarm based on an actual call for service to the police or fire department, or based upon an actual on-sight visual or audible alarm activation that is observed by any member of the police or fire departments, and which is proven to be a false alarm shall pay a false alarm fee to the city as follows:
  1. First false alarm within the calendar year is free.
  2. Second false alarm within the same calendar year as first false alarm is $25.
  3. Third false alarm within the same calendar year as second false alarm is $50.
  4. Fourth false alarm within the same calendar year as previous three false alarms is $100.
  5. Five or more false alarms within the same calendar year as previous four false alarms is $300 per additional false alarm.

9.70.070 Testing alarm
An owner or lessee of an alarm system shall notify his central receiving station or answering service prior to any service, test, repair, maintenance, adjustment, alteration or installation of his alarm system which might activate a false alarm and result in a police and/or fire department response. Any alarm system activated where such prior notice has been give shall not constitute a false alarm, so long as no police or fire department response is generated as a result of such testing.

After any false alarm caused by any malfunction of an alarm system, the owner or lessee shall cause the alarm system to be repaired so as to eliminate such malfunction before reactivating the alarm system.

9.70.080 Fees
Fees prescribed in this chapter shall be in addition to any other lawful fees imposed by the city for doing or conducting business with the city.

9.70.090 Limitation on liability
The city is under no obligation or duty to any owner or lessee of an alarm system or any other person by reason of any provision of this chapter, or the exercise of any privilege by any owner or lessee of an alarm system including but not limited to any defects in police or fire alarm system, any delay in transmission of an alarm message to any emergency unit, or damage caused by non-response or in responding to any alarm by any city officer, employee or agent.

9.70.100 No retroactive application of alarm usage requirements
Not withstanding any provision of Chapter 9.70 to the contrary, any alarm owner or lessee currently utilizing an alarm system or systems, that were not installed in accordance with the provision of this Chapter, may continue to use such alarms, only after the requirements of Section 9.70.030 have been complied with.

Letter to Business / Home owner.
If you require an alarm permit you can print one here. Please return to the Delano Police Department when completed.