False Alarm Update: Rialto, Alachua County, Santa Fe, Alameda County

RIALTO, Calif.

Citing the drain put on city resources, the Southern California city of Rialto is now charging more for police response to false alarms. Under the new fee structure, the first two false alarms are free before fees between $50 and $200 kick in on the third alarm.

Rialto Police Department spokesman Lt. Joe Cirilo told the Daily Bulletin about 98 percent of residential and commercial alarms are false in the city located about 56 miles east of Los Angeles. “It takes resources from the Police Department. We have to respond with at least two officers, sometimes three,” Cirilo told the Bulletin. “Those are priority calls. We have to respond.”

The third false alarm from a business costs $50, but will cost $100 under the new fee structure. The fourth will cost $150, up from $75. And the fifth and subsequent alarms will cost $200 each, up from $100.

For a residence, the third false alarm will cost $75, up from $50. The fourth will be $100, up from $75. And all subsequent alarms will cost the resident $125 instead of the current $100.

In other false alarm news…

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla.: A false alarm law that requires a permit for monitored or unmonitored fire alarm systems was recently implemented in Alachua County.
The new law is already causing concern at the University of Florida. Under the new provision, a first false alarm is OK – but any after that will warrant a $25 fine. Gainesville Fire Rescue Spokesman Bob Woods says the fee applies across the board, according to WRUF Radio.

SANTA FE: Santa Fe police plan to start fining homeowners and businesses for false burglar alarm calls.
Santa Fe officers handled more than 8,300 false alarms last year, according to the Associated Press. They say that’s enough to keep two officers busy full time.
A Santa Fe city ordinance allows for a $25 fine after five false alarms within a single 12-month period. People can be fined $100 after the 10th false alarm.

ALAMEDA COUNTY, Calif.: Big fines are in the future for false alarms in unincorporated areas of the county that includes the city of Oakland.
Alameda County supervisors recently approved an ordinance to charge business and residential alarm customers for initial permits and biennial renewal fees, along with rising fines after the first false alarm each year, according to the Oakland Tribune .
The ordinance, which takes effect in August, applies only to unincorporated areas, such as Ashland, Castro Valley, Cherryland, Fairview and San Lorenzo.  Adopted July 12, the ordinance is expected to raise $167,000 a year for the county.

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