City of Lebanon, PA
Lebanon County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 1, passed 5-13-1985]
Council, finding that there has been a proliferation of installation and use of commercial and residential automatic burglar and robbery alarm systems within the City, that a substantial increase in the number of false alarms being reported from these systems has required police response, and that the unregulated use of such alarm systems poses a substantial threat to the orderly and effective provision of emergency services by the Bureau of Police, hereby declares it to be necessary to provide for the greater control and more effective regulation of alarm systems, alarm businesses and users.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 2, passed 5-13-1985]
FALSE ALARM
Activation of an alarm system through mechanical failure, malfunction, improper installation or negligence of the alarm user or of his family, employees, agents, guests or invitees, or the intentional activation of the alarm system under circumstances where the physical security of the premises or safety of the activator or other persons upon the premises is not threatened, which is responded to by the Bureau of Police. Such terminology does not include alarms caused by hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, lightning or other extreme weather conditions and causes, except those specifically set forth above, which are beyond the control of the alarm user.
POLICE ALARM
Alarms commonly referred to as "burglar alarms" and "hold-up alarms".
[Ord. 24-1996, 97, passed 11-24-1997]
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 of the Police Department. Additionally, in the case of false alarms the Chief of Police or his designee shall cause an investigation to be made and keep a record of such false alarms on file. For such false alarms, the following penalties are prescribed:
(a) 
For the first through third alarm in a given calendar year, a warning shall be issued. For the first false alarm in any given calendar year, the Chief of Police or his designee shall notify the person occupying the premises upon which the alarm system is located that a false alarm has been received and shall give such person a copy of this article. For the third false alarm received in the same calendar year the Chief of Police or his designee shall notify the person occupying the premises upon which the alarm system is located that a third false alarm has been received, and that any further false alarms during the same calendar year will result in penalties as set forth in this article.
(b) 
For the fourth and fifth false alarms in the same calendar year, an administrative fee of $50 each payable to the City shall be imposed. The administrative fee hereby imposed shall be payable in lieu of a fine hereinafter imposed by this article.
(c) 
For the sixth through tenth false alarms in the same calendar year, an administrative fee of $75 each payable to the City shall be imposed. The administrative fee hereby imposed shall be payable in lieu of a fine hereinafter imposed by this article.
(d) 
For the eleventh and subsequent false alarms in the same calendar year, an administrative fee of $100 each payable to the City shall be imposed. The administrative fee hereby imposed shall be payable in lieu of a fine hereinafter imposed by this article.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 4, passed 5-13-1985]
No alarm charge shall be assessed to the alarm subscriber if after the alarm was activated, and before police arrive at the alarm location, the subscriber contacts and verifies with the proper security codes the Police Department.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 5, passed 5-13-1985]
Local alarm systems shall be equipped with a timing mechanism that shall disengage the audible and/or visual alarm after a maximum period of 30 minutes. Audible alarms without such a timing mechanism, other than fire alarms, shall be unlawful in the City and shall be disconnected by the user within 60 days from the effective date of this article.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 6, passed 5-13-1985]
Every premise upon which an alarm system is installed shall be subject to inspection at reasonable times by authorized personnel of the Bureau of Police. Such inspection to be limited to such areas as are necessary to inspect the installation and operation of the alarm system.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 7, passed 5-13-1985]
Following notice by the Chief of Police or his designee that a false police or fire alarm constitutes a public nuisance, the owner of such system may file an affidavit with the Chief of Police or his designee as appropriate indicating under oath that the false alarms previously caused by such system were caused by an unknown mechanical or other defect within the system, not to include improper use. Such owner may verify and shall include a statement by competent workmen or repairmen in the field that such system was defective and such deficiency has been corrected. Upon the filing of such affidavit with appropriate exhibits, the false alarm history concerning the premises shall be considered void and of no legal effect.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 8, passed 5-13-1985]
Where false alarms have originated from negligent use or a combination of negligent use and a defective system, in order to terminate the finding that the system is a public nuisance, the owner shall comply with the provisions of Section 751.07, and in addition file an affidavit explaining the steps taken to correct the negligent use which resulted in false alarms. Upon acceptance of such affidavits by the Chief of Police or his designee, the declaration of the alarm system as a public nuisance shall be considered void and of no legal effect.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 9, passed 5-13-1985]
All outdoor audible alarms that are activated falsely shall be subject to the same conditions applicable to direct-line radio or other electronic calls that result in false alarms.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 10, passed 5-13-1985]
Any alarm system whereby police officers or fire fighters are directly dispatched as a result of an alarm which automatically signals or calls the Police Department or EMA control or any other agency handling the system, or any other audible signal, once declared to be a nuisance, shall require the prior consent of the Chief of Police or his designee before it may be utilized.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 11, passed 5-13-1985]
Automatic dialing devices shall be discontinued within 90 days after the effective date of this article. All automatic dialing devices that have been programmed to automatically transmit a request for emergency response directly to the communications center or any other Bureau of Police telephone number shall be disconnected.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 12, passed 5-13-1985]
The use of police alarms, whether audible or direct-line type, is expressly permitted subject to the following conditions:
(a) 
Direct-line radio or other electronic police or fire alarms shall be installed by competent workmen so that such devices shall not emit false alarms.
(b) 
Any alarm system that produces false alarms shall constitute a public nuisance if such system activates more than five false alarms in any thirty-day period, or 15 false alarms in any ninety-day period. Any subsequent alarm after this time period shall result in the subscriber's alarm being declared a public nuisance by the Chief of Police or his designee.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 13, passed 5-13-1985]
No owner of property or persons in charge of real property shall use or permit to be used any burglar alarm that has previously been declared a public nuisance as provided herein. If any false alarms shall be given by such system following the date of receipt of notice as set forth herein, the false alarm shall be unlawful and constitute a violation of this article.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 14, passed 5-13-1985]
Notice as required by this article shall be given by the Chief of Police or his designee by mailing a certified letter with return receipt requested, or by personal service of such notice by handing a copy of the same to the owner of the subject property or to an adult representative thereof. If service is made in person, the Chief of Police or his designee shall file a proof of service which shall be under oath, and which shall designate the person upon whom service was made. For the purpose of this article, the owner of real estate on which an alarm system is placed and used shall be considered the owner and the person responsible for its proper maintenance and use. In addition to any penalty provided herein, upon notifying the owner that the police or fire alarm system constitutes a public nuisance, the Chief of Police or his designee shall also notify the Police Department, Emergency Management Agency, and any other agency handling the system, that the system has been declared a public nuisance and that the system should be disconnected and no longer used.
[Ord. 24-1996, 97 § 1, passed 11-24-1997]
Any person connecting a commercial or residential police alarm to the City of Lebanon Police Department shall pay a fee of $90 per circuit. Beginning the second year, an annual service charge in the amount of $100 shall be assessed.
[Ord. 69-1984, 85 § 16, passed 5-13-1985]
Whoever violates the terms of this article, or fails to pay the administrative fee for false alarms in excess of six in the same calendar year shall, be fined not more than $300 or imprisoned not more than 90 days, or both, plus administrative fees.