Sandy Springs False Alarm Ordinance Revised Yet Again

The Sandy Springs City Council voted 6-0 to approve amendments to the fee structure and appeal process for false alarms.

SANDY SPRINGS, Ga. — The Sandy Springs City Council voted unanimously this week to once again amend its controversial false alarm ordinance.

At Tuesday’s city council meeting, council members approved changes to the fee structure and appeal process for false alarms in response to feedback from alarm companies.

“This is another step in improving our false alarm ordinance,” City Attorney Dan Lee said via the Northside Neighbor.

Under the changes to the ordinance, the fine for the first false alarm remains at $25 for the alarm company. The second false alarm fine was reduced from $250 to $150, and the fine for the third false alarm remains at $250.

A $500 fine for a fourth offense was eliminated under the amendment.

The modification to the ordinance also says that “a monitored site” that experiences more than three false alarms will be ineligible for dispatch for intrusion calls to Sandy Springs police for one year. It had previously been two years.

Also changing is the time an alarm company has to file an appeal, which the city extended from 10 to 30 days. To register an appeal, the alarm company must file a written notice to the city within 30 days of the false alarm. The city’s public safety department will review and decide on the appeal within five business days.

The amended ordinance went into effect immediately.

The changes are the latest in several tweaks the city has made to the ordinance, dating back to July 2017 when the council voted to charge alarm companies for false alarms instead of residents. In April, the city revoked the registration of 39 alarm companies when those companies did not pay fines.

Many companies have paid up since, but five were still non-compliant and hadn’t paid fines as of April 13. Sandy Springs said police would not respond to intrusion alarm calls from:

  • Patterson Security Services (representing 20 customers)
  • RTA Security (representing five customers)
  • Security Sales & Service (representing 27 customers)
  • Banner Security Systems, Inc. (registration of customers in process)
  • Safe Home Security (no customers registered)

At its May 1 meeting, the council voted 6-0 to approve amending the ordinance to require monitoring companies whose properties that are placed on the city’s no-call list to notify their customers. Companies’ properties are placed on the no-call list after police have been called there several times and all were false alarms.

Sandy Springs said it will continue to respond to fire alarms, panic buttons, duress calls and hold-up calls, as well as direct calls to 911.

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About the Author


Although Bosch’s name is quite familiar to those in the security industry, his previous experience has been in daily newspaper journalism. Prior to joining SECURITY SALES & INTEGRATION in 2006, he spent 15 years with the Los Angeles Times, where he performed a wide assortment of editorial responsibilities, including feature and metro department assignments as well as content producing for Bosch is a graduate of California State University, Fresno with a degree in Mass Communication & Journalism. In 2007, he successfully completed the National Burglar and Fire Alarm Association’s National Training School coursework to become a Certified Level I Alarm Technician.

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