Town of Bedford, NH
Hillsborough County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town of Bedford 3-22-1995; amended in its entirety 11-6-2019 by Ord. No. 2019-04. Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
Fire alarm systems — See Ch. 130, Art. III.
The purpose of this chapter is to encourage alarm users and alarm businesses to assume increased responsibility for maintaining the mechanical reliability and the proper use of alarm systems, to prevent unnecessary police response to false alarms and thereby to protect the emergency response capability of the Town from misuse.
This chapter governs burglary and robbery systems, requires permits, establishes fees, provides for discontinuation of police response to alarms and provides for punishment of violations.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
The business by any individual partnership, corporation, or other entity of selling, leasing, maintaining, servicing, repairing, altering, replacing, moving or installing any alarm system or causing to be sold, leased, maintained, serviced, repaired, altered, replaced, moved or installed any alarm system in or on any building, structure or facility.
Any assembly of equipment, mechanical or electrical, arranged to signal the occurrence of an illegal entry or other activity requiring urgent attention and to which police personnel are expected to respond.
The person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind which owns, controls or occupies any building, structure or facility wherein an alarm system is maintained.
A device, which is interconnected to a telephone line and is programmed to select a predetermined telephone number and transmit by code signal an emergency message indicating a need for emergency response. Such a device is an alarm system.
The Town facility used to receive emergency and general information from the public to be dispatched to the respective Police and Fire Departments.
An alarm system signaling an entry or attempted entry into the area protected by the system.
An alarm business that interconnects an alarm system to its own trunk lines and then calls the Bedford Emergency Dispatch using a human being instead of an automatic dialing device.
An alarm signal, eliciting a response by police personnel when a situation requiring a response does not in fact exist, but does not include an alarm signal caused by violent conditions of nature or other extraordinary circumstances not reasonably subject to control by the alarm business operator or alarm user.
To connect an alarm system including an automatic dialing device to a telephone line, either directly or through a mechanical device that utilizes a telephone, for the purpose of using the telephone line to transmit a message upon the activation of the alarm system.
The head of the Bedford Police Department or his/her designee.
A telephone line serving the Bedford Emergency Dispatch that is designated to receive emergency calls.
An alarm system signaling a robbery or attempted robbery.
A feature of an alarm system which will cause an audible alarm to stop emitting sound.
When the alarm system is capable to eliciting a response by police personnel.
Every alarm user interconnecting an automatic dialing device to the Bedford Emergency Dispatch shall have an alarm user's permit for each system from the Police Chief.
A yearly permit fee shall be established by the Town Council.
Fines will be assessed by the Police Chief to the alarm user for excessive false alarms during any twelve-month period as follows:
Third alarm: $25.
Fourth alarm: $50.
Fifth false alarm: $75.
Sixth false alarm: $100.
Any additional false alarms: $200.
The alarm owner or occupant of a building serviced by an alarm will be notified of a false alarm either in person by responding police personnel, written notice, or regular mail. If the fine has not been received within 30 days of notice and there is no appeal pending on the validity of the alarm, the police may initiate the no-response or disconnect process and may also initiate the enforcement of penalties.
The Police Chief has the right to waive any or all false alarm assessments if he or she determines it to be in the best interest of the Town of Bedford.
The Police Chief may order no-response and/or disconnect after six false alarms in a calendar year or failure to pay a fine within 30 days. The Police Chief will advise the alarm user that there may be no emergency response, if serviced by a central alarm company, or the Town of Bedford may disconnect the alarm system if interconnected to the Bedford Emergency Dispatch. If a disconnect or no-response is initiated, reinstatement can be made by the Police Chief upon payment of fines or penalties and/or a finding that a reasonable effort has been made to correct the false alarms.
The Police Chief may also order an alarm disconnect or no emergency response for any other reason deemed in the best interest of the Town and public safety.
The alarm user has the right to a hearing before any disconnect or no-response order goes into effect. A hearing must be requested within 10 days of a notice to disconnect, notice of no response, or notice of a false alarm. Failure to contest the determination in the required time period results in a conclusive presumption that the alarm was false and/or the notice to disconnect or no-response is valid.
The hearing shall be before the respective Police Chief. The alarm user shall have the right to present written and oral evidence subject to the right of cross-examination. The Chief will arbitrate whether or not the alarms are false and take appropriate action.
All revenues generated from this chapter will go to the general fund of the Town of Bedford.
Violation of this chapter shall be punishable upon conviction by a fine of not more than $500, plus any fines due to the Town.