LOWELL, Mass. — City officials here have approved a stricter false alarm ordinance after police responded to 4,014 alarm calls in 2011 — 99% of which were false. The false alarms cost the city more than $435,000 last year, reports The Lowell Sun.
The current alarm ordinance requires users to register all privately monitored alarm systems with the city, and allows the city to impose fines against commercial and residential property owners with recurring false alarm calls.
Under the new law, which takes effect Oct. 15, commercial sites will pay a $15 alarm registration fee, while homeowners will pay $10. Residential property owners will face fines of $50 for a third offense, $100 for the fourth and $200 for each subsequent offense. Commercial property owners will face a fine of $200 for the third offense, $250 for the fourth and $300 for the fifth or more.
The city has also hired third-party contractor PMAM Corp., which specializes in false alarm management solutions, to collect the fines.
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