[HISTORY: Derived from Sec. 4-26 of the 2002 Revised General Ordinances, adopted by the Township Council of the Township of Clark 12-16-2002 by Ord. No. 02-27. Amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ALARM CONSOLE
- The approved console or control panel of devices giving a visual or audio response, or both, and located within the confines of the Police Department of the Township.
- ALARM DEVICE
- Any type of alarm system actuating equipment in the alarm console, providing warning of intrusion, fire, smoke, flood or other peril.
- ALARM INSTALLATION
- Any alarm device or combination of devices installed for one or more buildings at a location other than the alarm console.
- DESIGNATED REPRESENTATIVE
- A designated member of the Police Department of the Township.
- DIAL ALARM
- Any alarm device which, when activated, automatically or electronically selects a telephone line connected to a central alarm station or to police headquarters, reporting a prerecorded message, requesting police assistance.
- FALSE ALARM
- Any alarm actuated by inadvertence, negligence or unintentional act of someone other than an intruder, and shall include, as well, alarms caused by malfunctioning of the alarm device or other relevant equipment, but shall not include alarms created by malfunction of the alarm console.
- The person obtaining the license to maintain the alarm console as hereinafter set forth.
- LOCAL ALARM
- Any alarm or device which, when actuated, produces a signal not connected to the alarm console, such as store burglar alarms actuating bell devices.
- Any person owning or leasing an alarm device or a local alarm within the scope of this chapter.
The purpose of this chapter is to provide standards and regulations for various types of local alarms of intrusion, burglar, fire and other emergency alarm devices, whether by direct line, radio, telephone or other means of actuating a device at the police headquarters of the Township, and requiring response thereto by the Police Department, Fire Department or other municipal agencies.
The provisions of this chapter shall apply to any person who operates, maintains, owns or leases any alarm device or local alarm designed to summon the Police Department, Fire Department or other municipal agency to any location in response to any type of alarm signal.
The terms of this chapter shall in no way prohibit alarm companies from providing service by private source to other offices within or without the Township, so long as such activity is not connected to the alarm console, except, however, that any person having a premises protected by an alarm device shall still be responsible for the registration thereof in accordance with §§ 70-5 and 70-7 hereof, without fee.
Issuance; insurance requirements. There is hereby established a police alarm console license which shall be granted upon recommendation of the Chief of Police or his/her designated representative. Any such licensee shall have exclusive use and control of the alarm console, except for use by the Police Department. Such licensee will be responsible for the establishment, construction, installation, care and maintenance of such console containing equipment and being of design approved by the Chief of Police at no cost to the Township. For any such license granted hereunder, the licensee will assume all liability and agree to indemnify and save harmless the Township, its agents and the Township Police Department for any acts in conjunction with the operation of such police alarm console, and in conjunction therewith, shall furnish annually to the Township Clerk, a noncancellable insurance certificate indicating complete liability coverage in an amount no less than:
Inspection; appeal. Any connection to the police alarm console shall be of a type inspected and approved by a person designated for such purpose by the Chief of Police, and any person aggrieved by such decision may appeal such decision, in writing, within 10 days to the Township Council.
Connection to console. All alarms in operation and connected to the alarm panel board located in Township Police Department headquarters as of the date of the adoption of this chapter, except dial alarms, shall be connected hereunder to the alarm console by the licensee, and no connection cost for such transfer shall be permitted.
Subscriber charges; exemptions. The licensee for the police alarm console shall be permitted to charge subscribers a maximum installation fee of $50 and a maximum monthly retainer or maintenance fee of $8 except, however, that no fee shall be charged to the Township, the Board of Education of the Township, public or private places of worship in the Township for monthly charges or console connection charges for any existing or future systems in public buildings or private buildings as set forth above. Any equipment or alarm device installed by the alarm console licensee in such public buildings shall be at the wholesale cost, exclusive of labor charges.
Type of equipment. The licensee shall install initially a Varitech Alarm Monitor and Recorder, or its equivalent, or a display console having no less than 60 zones available for present systems and future connections, which console shall be approved by the Underwriters Laboratories.
Term; bond. Except as provided in § 70-6, any license issued hereunder shall be for a term of five years from the date of approval by the Township Council. Such licensee shall post annually with the Township Clerk, and prior to the anniversary date of the granting of the license, a performance bond in the amount of $5,000 noncancellable without notification to and approval by the Township Council, guaranteeing performance for each year of the obligation of the licensee and insuring maintenance of such console and the alarm system during the period when such license is in force. Failure of the licensee to provide the annual bond shall mean automatic revocation of the license.
Franchise fee. The licensee, for the privilege of obtaining such license, shall pay to the Township a minimum annual sum of 5% of the gross rental earned annually by the licensee from subscribers connected to the alarm console, which payment shall be made within 30 days of the close of each fiscal year in which the license is in force. Such licensee, by acceptance of the license, shall be deemed to have agreed to have the books and accounts of the licensee open to inspection by the Township Auditor, or other person designated by the Township Council, to verify the annual account, which shall be submitted by the licensee, coincidental with the fee described aforesaid. The aforesaid payment shall be made to the Township Treasurer, and shall be accompanied by a sworn or certified statement.
Permit or registration required. Any person who owns or operates a police alarm device or a local alarm shall make application for a permit, in writing, to the Chief of Police. All local alarms shall be registered.
Application. The application shall contain at least: the name of the installer of such device; the type of device; provisions relating to false alarms and testing procedures; a list of persons to be contacted in the event of an alarm; and other information as may be required by the Chief of Police.
Waiver of liability. Any permit granted hereunder shall be accepted upon the express condition that the permittee shall indemnify and hold the Township harmless from and on account of any and all damages arising out of the activities of the permittee, its alarm contractor or the alarm console licensee of the Township.
For alarm devices, the permittee shall pay whatever charges are required by any alarm company making such installation and, in addition thereto, such connection and monthly maintenance charges as hereinabove provided for, to the licensee for the alarm control panel.
The permittee shall also pay to the Township Treasurer an annual fee of $15 for the privilege of connecting to the console, which fee shall be payable by January 15 of each year annually, so long as the permit is in force. Any permit issued between January 15 and December 31 shall require the same fee, no portion of which shall be prorated or refundable. Should any such fee be delinquent for 30 days, the Township Treasurer shall notify the permittee, in writing, that such system has been disconnected from the alarm console.
Dial alarm fees. For dial alarm devices, the owners shall pay to the Township an annual fee of $15 to cover the cost of registration and testing, and to amortize the cost of the special phone line or lines required in the Township administration building, along with ancillary tape devices at the police desk, necessitated by these systems.
The Township shall be under no duty or obligation to any permittee hereunder, or to any alarm console licensee hereunder, the alarm console and allied equipment being maintained at will and subject to termination at any time by cancellation of the system, by resolution duly adopted by the Council. Any individual permit issued hereunder may be revoked at any time by the Township Council upon recommendation of the Chief of Police, provided that 30 days' notice is given in writing to such permittee.
Dial alarms shall be coded to dial a special separate number, which number can be obtained from the Chief of Police or his/her designated representative. No dial alarm shall be coded to dial the number of the general police switchboard of the Township.
Messages must conform to approved format on application.
Total length of message must not exceed 15 seconds.
Message to be received by police headquarters twice, but no more than twice for each incident.
This device must provide an automatic line seizure feature in the event the number called is busy with an incoming or outgoing call.
Any person having a dial alarm device which dials the general police number, upon discovery thereof, shall receive notice, in writing, from the Chief of Police requiring the owner to comply with the terms of this chapter. If the owner fails to do so within 30 days of the receipt of such notice, he/she shall then be punishable as provided in § 70-14.
All components of such equipment must be maintained by the owner in good repair. When evidence exists that there has been failure to comply with the operational requirements of this chapter, the Chief of Police is then authorized to demand that such device be disconnected until such time as compliance with current requirements is reestablished.
Any licensee for the alarm console, and any permittee utilizing the services of any alarm company connected to such console, shall provide for a representative to be on call at all times. Such service shall be provided within eight hours of notification by the Police Department of any malfunctioning of any equipment.
In the case of a false alarm, any person having knowledge thereof shall immediately notify the Police Department in a manner to be prescribed by rules and regulations.
In addition, in the case of false alarms, the Chief of Police shall cause an investigation to be made and keep a record of such false alarms on file.
For such false alarms, the Township Council prescribes the following penalties.
For the first, second and third false alarm in any given calendar year, a warning shall be issued.
For each of the fourth and fifth false alarms, a fine of $25 shall be paid to the Township.
For each of the sixth through 12th false alarms, a fine of $50 shall be paid to the Township.
[Amended 10-16-2006 by Ord. No. 06-17]
For each of any subsequent false alarm after the 12th, a fine of $100 shall be paid to the Township.
[Added 10-16-2006 by Ord. No. 06-17]
Where the investigation of the Police Department discloses continued abuse of the privilege of connection to the alarm console, and a disregard by the permittee in not taking remedial steps to avoid false alarms, the Chief of Police reserves the right to require disconnection from the alarm console for a limited or permanent time, provided that no such permit shall be revoked or suspended without giving the permittee any opportunity to show cause before the Council why such action should not be taken.
Any unauthorized equipment may be disconnected by the Chief of Police for noncompliance with this chapter. Any such person installing or maintaining unauthorized equipment shall be prosecuted for violation of this chapter, and each and every day such equipment is in operation shall be considered a separate violation.
Any permittee shall, by acceptance of this permit, be deemed to have consented to inspection of the premises on which the alarm devices are installed, at reasonable hours, by the Chief of Police or his/her designated representative.
All audible alarms shall be equipped with a time relay or battery to limit the sounding of an alarm to 30 minutes or less.
The Chief of Police, from time to time, may promulgate written rules and regulations supplementing this chapter in order to provide for recordkeeping and efficient management of the system; provided, however, that the Township Council shall first approve such rules and regulations, or any changes thereto, by appropriate resolution.
In addition to the penalty provided in Chapter 1, General Provisions, Article III, General Penalty, any license, permit or registration may be suspended or revoked for violation of any of the provisions of this chapter relating thereto, if for other good cause, after notice and hearing, if requested, in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 11, Article I.