False alarm fee proposed
May 3, 2013
Summit County burglar alarm owners may be faced with a fee for too many triggered false alarms.
Summit County Councilmember Roger Armstrong suggested during a meeting on Wednesday, April 1, that alarm owners be billed, such as $50 on the third false alarm, to compensate for deputies’ response time.
"It’s something we should probably talk over with the sheriff to see if it would be something that would make sense," he said. "And maybe the sheriff could run some numbers and give us some idea of the number of false alarms and whether there are multiple alarms associated with the same address."
County Manager Bob Jasper suggested the alarm companies be billed for multiple false alarms instead of the alarm owners.
"But you’ll hear different thoughts about that," he said. "Let’s have a workshop on that and ask the sheriff to come in."
The Summit County Sheriff’s Office announced in February that it would no longer respond to unverified burglar alarms, citing insufficient deputies.
According to the Sheriff’s Office, Summit County deputies responded to 1,076 alarms last year, 98 percent of which were false alarms, equating to a total of 335 hours of deputy time spent on false alarms.
After discussions with local alarm companies, however, the Sheriff’s Office recanted the decision, opting instead to continue responding to verified and unverified alarms through 2013, but with unverified alarms given a lower priority.
According to Sheriff’s Capt. Justin Martinez, the issue will be readdressed following the County Council’s 2014 budget discussion.