New Omaha Law Mandates Alarm Registration For Response


A new false alarm ordinance has been passed by the Omaha City Council whereby alarm owners must now register their security alarms in order to receive police response beginning Jan. 1, 2003. The new ordinance replaces a little-enforced ordinance that allows the city to collect registration fees and to charge fines for those who have seven or more false alarms in a year.

According to The Omaha World-Herald, the city council on July 16 passed the law, including fining alarm companies and users for false alarms. The ordinance sets an annual $25 registration fee for home alarm users and an annual $35 fee for commercial alarm users, collected by alarm companies and turned over to the city. Additionally, it establishes penalties of $100 to users who fail to register.

“We’re [the city] using the alarm money to bolster the police department,” says Paul Landow, chief of staff for Omaha Mayor Mike Fahey. Bills for registration will be sent around Sept. 1, with fees due within 30 days.

Part of the new ordinance includes establishing an alarm review board, made up of three industry representatives and two citizens, to hear appeals for those contesting false alarms.

The ordinance does not affect police response to fire or panic alarms intentionally activated by a store clerk or homeowner.

Alarm companies generally support the ordinance, according to the newspaper.

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