Town of Rocklin Alarm Ordinance

Town of Rocklin Alarm Ordinance
WHEREAS, a burglar or holdup alarm is a high priority incident requiring the
immediate assignment of multiple police units to respond, and
WHEREAS, the Police Department responds to a significant number of false
alarms generated by security systems, causing a substantial expenditure of public funds
designated for emergency resources; and
WHEREAS, it is the City’s intention to create a civil penalty for repeated false
burglar or holdup alarms in an effort to limit the number of false alarms.
The City Council of the City of Rocklin hereby ordains as follows:
Section 1.
The City Council of the City of Rocklin hereby adds Chapter 9.44
to the Rocklin Municipal Code, effective April 11 th , 2008, to read as follows:
Chapter 9.44
The purpose of this chapter is to encourage the proper and effective use of alarm
systems by setting forth regulations governing burglary and holdup alarm systems within
the City.
The following terms, whenever used in this chapter, shall have the following
A. “Alarm company” means a person in the business of selling, providing,
monitoring, maintaining, servicing, repairing, altering, replacing, moving or installing an
alarm system in an alarm site. Such companies shall be licensed in accordance with the
provisions of Chapter 5.04, Business License, of the Rocklin Municipal Code.
B. “Alarm dispatch request” means a notification to a law enforcement agency
that an alarm, either manual or automatic, has been activated at a particular alarm site.
C. “Alarm site” means a single fixed premises or location served by an alarm
system or systems. Each unit, if served by a separate alarm system in a multi-unit
building or complex, shall be considered a separate alarm site.
D. “Alarm system” means a device or series of devices, including, but not limited
to, hardwired systems and systems interconnected with a radio frequency method such as
cellular or private radio signals, which emit or transmit a remote or local audible, visual
or electronic signal indicating an alarm condition and intended to summon law
enforcement response. Alarm System does not include an alarm installed in a vehicle or
on someone's person unless the vehicle or the personal alarm is permanently located at a
E. “Applicant” means a person who files an application for a new or renewal
permit as provided in this chapter.
F. “Arming station” means a device from which the alarm system is turned on
(armed) and off (disarmed).
G. “Audible alarm” means an alarm system that generates an audible sound on
the premises when it is actuated.
H. “Automatic shutoff device” means a mechanism that will cause the alarm
system to shutoff and reset within fifteen minutes.
I. “Burglar alarm” means an alarm system designed or used to detect and report
an unauthorized entry or attempted unauthorized entry upon the premises, building, or
structure protected by the system.
J. “Canceled alarm” means a police response to an alarm signal, where the
response is canceled by the alarm company or an authorized person at the alarm site prior
to the arrival of any responding police unit. Canceled alarms are not considered false
alarms. Duress or hold-up alarms may not be canceled.
K. “City” means the City of Rocklin.
L. “Direct dial telephone alarm” means a device which automatically telephones
the Rocklin Police Department and delivers a prerecorded message upon the alarm
activation of an alarm system.
M. “Duress alarm” means a silent or audible alarm system signal generated by
the entry of a designated code into the arming station in order to signal that the alarm user
is being forced to turn off the system or is in immediate danger and requires law
enforcement response.
Page 2 of
Ord. No. 928
N. “Excessive false alarms” means two (2) or more false alarms within a rolling
twelve (12) month period, whether the type was a Burglar Alarm or a Duress/Holdup
Alarm. The rolling twelve month period will consist of the twelve months preceding an
alarm event. A twelve month period will not consider any alarm event prior to the
effective date of this Ordinance.
O. “False alarm” means an alarm dispatch request to a law enforcement agency,
when the responding law enforcement officer finds no evidence of a criminal offense or
attempted criminal offense after having completed a timely investigation of the alarm
site. Alarms caused by power outage, severe storms, earthquakes, or other violent acts of
nature are not false alarms and shall not be included in determining an excessive false
alarm; provided, however, that it shall be the permittee’s burden to prove by clear and
convincing evidence that the alarm is not a false alarm.
P. “Holdup alarm” means a silent alarm signal generated by the manual
activation of a device intended to signal a robbery in progress or immediately after it has
Q. “Notice” means written notice, served either by personal service or by United
States mail, first class postage prepaid, addressed to the person to be notified at the last
known address. Service of such notice shall be effective upon the completion of personal
service or forty-eight hours after the placing of the notice in the custody of United States
Postal Service.
R. “Permittee” means any person granted a permit as provided herein, and his or
its agents and representatives.
S. “Siren” means any audible noise similar to that which must be sounded by an
authorized emergency vehicle under the conditions set forth in Section 21055 of the
California Vehicle Code.
T. “Verified alarm” means an alarm or signal resulting from the actual detection
of an unauthorized entry into a building, structure, or facility alerting the Rocklin Police
Department and/or others of the commission of an unlawful act within a building and
consistent with the type of alarm signal transmitted.
Standards and regulations prescribed.
The Chief of Police may prescribe or amend standards and regulations for the
construction and maintenance of alarm systems installed within the City. All devices are
required to meet or exceed such standards and regulations before permits may be issued
pursuant to this chapter. The Chief of Police may require inspection of an alarm systems
installed within the City during the permitting process.
Page 3 of
Ord. No. 928
Permits; Required.
A. Individual Users. It is unlawful to activate, operate or maintain an alarm
system upon any premises within the City without first obtaining an alarm system permit
to do so.
B. Alarm Company/Installers. It is unlawful to connect, activate, or install an
alarm system upon any property within the City without first obtaining an alarm system
C. Penalty – Violations of this Section are subject to civil penalty of $100 per
occurrence. Any violation of this Section shall be in addition to any excessive alarm
D. Waiver – The Chief of Police or designee may waive any penalty associated
with the administration of this chapter upon presentation of substantial evidence showing
extenuating, mitigating, or extraordinary facts and circumstances, and proof that an
application for an alarm system permit has been submitted to the City.
Permits; Applications; Form.
A. Any person desiring an alarm system permit shall file an application with the
Police Department on a form provided by the Police Department manually or
electronically which includes, but is not limited to, the following information:
1. The name and address of the applicant;
2. If different than above, the address at which the alarm system is to be
installed and used;
3. If the applicant is a corporation, the names and addresses of its
principal officers;
4. If the applicant is a partnership, association, or other business entity,
the names and addresses of the partners or persons comprising the
5. A description of the alarm system proposed to be installed, including
the manufacturer’s name and model number, if any; and,
6. The names, addresses and telephone numbers of one (1) or more
persons who will be available to secure the premises during any hour
of the day or night.
7. Any such additional information that the Police Chief may deem
necessary in order to fully and properly administer this ordinance.
In the interest of public safety, and as per California Government Code
6254(f), all information contained in and gathered through the alarm permit applications,
records relating to alarm dispatch requests, and applications for appeals shall be held in
confidence by all employees or representatives of the City and by any third-party
administrator or employees of a third-party administrator with access to such information.
Page 4 of
Ord. No. 928
C. Whenever any change occurs relating to the information required by this
section, the applicant or permittee shall give written notice thereof to the Rocklin Police
Department within ten days after such change.
D. An alarm system permit may be denied if the application is not in the form
and does not contain all information or fees required by this chapter.
Permit; Term.
Alarm System Permits are issued for the period of two (2) years and will expire
730 days after the date of issuance or renewal, unless otherwise suspended or revoked at
an earlier time. Upon expiration of an alarm system permit, a new permit shall be secured
in the manner specified in Section 9.44.050 and Section 9.44.080 before an alarm system
may continue in use.
Transfer of Permit Prohibited
Alarm permits may not be transferred to another person or alarm site. Permits are
valid only for the permittee and address listed on the permit.
Permit; Fees; Receipt.
Every initial application and subsequent renewal for an alarm system permit shall
be accompanied by a non-refundable permit fee. The fee is established to defray costs of
processing applications and permits, and shall be in addition to any other permit fee
imposed by the City of Rocklin Municipal Code. The Alarm System Permit fee imposed
shall be stated in the schedule of fees that shall be adopted by the City Council.
Applicability of Existing Alarm Systems.
The provision of this chapter shall apply to all alarm systems which were
installed, connected, operated or maintained on or prior to the date on which this chapter
becomes effective. However, such systems shall be given a grace period, ending
September 1, 2008, to obtain an Alarm System Permit and bring the alarm system into
compliance with City alarm system standards. The rolling 12 month period as defined in
Section 9.44.110 shall begin on the date this Ordinance is adopted.
Outside Audible Alarm Requirements
A. Every business maintaining an outside audible alarm shall post a notice
containing the names and telephone numbers of the persons to be notified in order to
render repairs and service or secure the premises during any hour of the day or night in
the event that the alarm is activated. Such notice shall be posted near the alarm in such a
position as to be legible from the ground level adjacent to the building where the alarm is
located. The wording “Police Alarm – Call City of Rocklin Police Department” shall be
placed on the alarm or immediately below the alarm device.
Page 5 of
Ord. No. 928
B. It shall be unlawful to install or use an alarm system which upon activation
emits a sound similar to sirens in use on public emergency vehicles or for public disaster
warning purposes.
C. All local exterior bell, gongs, noisemaking devices or pulsating lights shall
have a timing device that will silence or turn off such devices or lights within fifteen (15)
minutes following initial activation.
Penalty for Excessive False Alarms.
A. Whenever the police department responds to an excessive false alarm, the
permittee shall be assessed a civil penalty as described within this Section.
B. The amount of the penalty assessed shall be determined by the combined
number of both burglary and duress/holdup false alarms during a rolling twelve month
Alarm within prior 12 months
Third and Subsequent
Penalty (General)
Penalty Holdup or Duress
C. Failure to pay the penalty when due shall, in addition to any other available
remedy, may lead to suspension and/or revocation of the alarm permit and additional fees
associated with collection.
D. Penalties may be waived by the Chief of Police or designee for false alarms
upon presentation of substantial evidence showing extenuating, mitigating, or
extraordinary facts and circumstances, and where the permittee has undertaken action to
correct alarm system deficiencies.
E. Canceled alarms are not counted in the above schedule unless officers have
arrived on scene before cancellation.
Grounds for suspension, denial and/or revocation.
Unless there is a separate indication that there is a crime in progress, the Chief of
Police may reduce the priority or refuse police response to an alarm site after the denial,
suspension or revocation of an alarm permit. The following shall constitute grounds for
denial, suspension and/or revocation of the alarm permit:
A. Failure to pay fines and/or charges imposed as a result of excessive false
alarms at any alarm site; or
B. Failure to comply with standards or regulations adopted pursuant to this
chapter; or
Page 6 of
Ord. No. 928
C. Where the applicant, permittee, or the employee or agent of the applicant or
permittee has knowingly made any false, misleading, or fraudulent statement of a
material fact in the application for a permit or in any report or record required to be filed
with any city agency.
Denial, suspension or revocation of permit.
A. If the Chief of Police denies the issuance of a permit, suspends or revokes a
permit issued under this Chapter, the Chief of Police shall serve the permittee with a
written order stating the reasons for the denial, suspension or revocation of the permit.
The order shall be effective immediately upon service and, unless there is a separate
indication that there is a crime in progress, the Chief of Police may refuse police response
to the alarm site after the suspension or revocation of an alarm permit.
B. It is unlawful to operate or use any alarm system after service of a notice of
denial, suspension, or revocation of an alarm permit.
C. The Chief of Police may reconsider the denial, suspension or revocation of a
permit or reinstate a suspended permit, provided that within forty-five days of the denial
or suspension, the applicant or permittee has established to the satisfaction of the Chief of
Police that the alarm system will be operated in compliance with this chapter, by
complying with the following:
Provide a letter from an alarm company licensed by the State of
California indicating that the alarm has been completely checked
and any mechanical malfunctions have been repaired;
Agree that an agent of the business, or, if the alarm is residential, a
responsible party, shall respond to the alarm site within thirty
minutes of notification, each time the alarm is activated;
Review correct alarm setting procedures with every resident, agent,
employee or other person who may be responsible for user error
alarm activations;
Pay in full all outstanding excessive false alarm fines or charges;
Other reasonable procedures, conditions, or requirements as may
be established by the Chief of Police.
D. The decision of the Chief of Police to suspend a permit or the refusal of the
Chief of Police to reinstate a permit may be appealed in writing by any interested person
to the City Manager within fifteen calendar days of the decision and upon the payment of
any penalties or fees due.
Page 7 of
Ord. No. 928
E. Any denial to issue a permit which has not been appealed within forty-five
(45) days of such denial shall be final. Any suspended permit which is not reinstated
within forty-five days shall automatically be deemed revoked. No revoked permit shall be
reissued until six months after the revocation, at which time a new application may be
filed pursuant to Section 9.44.050.
Fee exemptions.
The United States, the State of California, counties, municipal corporations, departments
thereof and other governmental entities are exempt from application fees required in
Section 9.44.080.
Public nuisance.
Any alarm system is a public nuisance:
A. When the alarm system generates an audible sound on the premises for a
period longer than fifteen minutes;
B. When the alarm system generates excessive false alarms.
Remedies cumulative.
All remedies shall be cumulative, and the use of one or more remedies by the City
shall not bar the use of any other remedy for the purpose of enforcing the provisions of
this chapter.
Section 2. Section 3.32.050 of the Rocklin Municipal Code entitled “Service fees
established” shall be amended to add “Alarm Permit Fee (7410)” under subsection (C)
entitled “Public safety” and shall be amended to delete “Police False Alarm (7400)”
under subsection (C) entitled “Public safety.”
Section 3. Within fifteen days of passage of this ordinance, the City Clerk shall
cause the full text of the ordinance, with the names of those City Councilmembers voting
for and against the ordinance, to be published in the Placer Herald. In lieu of publishing
the full text of the ordinance, the City Clerk, if so directed by the City Attorney and
within fifteen days, shall cause a summary of the ordinance, prepared by the City
Attorney and with the names of the City Councilmembers voting for and against the
ordinance, to be published in the Placer Herald, and shall post in the office of the City
Clerk a certified copy of the City Councilmembers voting for and against the ordinance.
The publication of a summary of the ordinance in lieu of the full text of the ordinance is
authorized only where the requirements of Government Code section 36933(c)(1) are
Page 8 of
Ord. No. 928
INTRODUCED at a regular meeting of the City Council of the City of Rocklin
held on February 26, 2008, by the following vote:
Hill, Lund, Yuill, Storey
PASSED AND ADOPTED at a regular meeting of the City Council of the City of
Rocklin held on March 11, 2008, by the following roll call vote:
Brett Storey, Mayor
Barbara Ivanusich, City Clerk
First Reading:
Second Reading:
Effective Date:
e:\clerk\ord\alarm ordinance(tjr)\03/07/08
Page 9 of
Ord. No. 928
The procedure outlines the City of Rocklin use of a third party vendor to administer the City’s Alarm
Program. The regulations and the civil penalties are set forth in Rocklin Municipal Code §9.44 –
Regulation of Alarm Systems and Excessive Alarms.
This section pertains to the following CALEA standards: 81.2.13
The third party vendor who administers the City of Rocklin’s Alarm Program, completes the following
1. If the balance remains unpaid, 15 days after the original bill has been sent out, telephone
contact is attempted with the resident or business. Additional telephone contact will be
attempted every 7 days until the bill is paid or turned over to the Rocklin Police Department for
further action.
2. An additional bill will be mailed out to the resident or business every 30 days thereafter
until the balance is paid in full.
If after 120 days, the balance remains unpaid, the third party vendor will refer the resident or business to
the Rocklin Police Department for a final payment demand, through the City’s Finance Department,
before being referred to collections. The resident or business may be considered for Denial, Suspension,
or Revocation of the permit as outlined in Rocklin Municipal Code 9.44.130.
1. Any decision to refuse service to a residential or business address shall be immediately
entered into the RIMS premise field.
2. Upon Communications receiving an alarm call from any source, to an address with a denied
response, the Dispatcher shall notify the Supervisor who will make the decision to respond or
The following Appeal Process is included on each bill that is received by a residence or business and
includes the following components:
You have the right to appeal penalties assessed under the City of Rocklin’s Alarm Ordinance (RMC
1. Appeals must be received by the City of Rocklin within 35 days of the date of your
citation. Appeals must be in writing, on an Appeal Form provided by the City of Rocklin’s Police
2. Completed Appeal Forms must be submitted to the Rocklin Police Department, Attn: Alarm
3. The Police Chief or his/her designee will review the Appeal and render a written
decision within 30 days from the date the Appeal Form is received by the Police Department.
4. The Police Chief will notify the Appellant in writing of any decision to deny or grant the
appeal and dismiss or modify the penalty assessed.
5. The decision of the Police Chief will be final.
Enacted: April 13, 2009
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