False alarms will result in monetary fine

City council approved the alarm ordinance from August with slight changes

An ordinance from August that would fine false alarms was approved Monday, Dec. 10 at city council.

Councilmember Armondo Pavone asked to hold the new rules Aug. 20 so the council could take a second look. Now the system and some wording has changed but the monetary penalties remain the same. A second false alarm in one year results in a $100 fine.

The main change to the ordinance was that instead of a permit, the user will register their alarm. A permit would be granted by the police department, but registration is something you voluntarily sign up for, Pavone said.

However, if you don’t sign up there’s still a $50 non-registration fee. Registration also offers more legal protection to the city.

The wording was “cleaned up” so Renton will not need to prove why the false alarm occurred and clarified the responsibilities between users and companies, Pavone said.

“There’s no way for the city to know if it was due to someone breaking in or faulty wiring,” he said.

The ordinance was originally written by an alarm company, so the revision removes language that protected them, Pavone said. The fines still go to the user, and he said it’s still their obligation to make sure the system’s working properly.

Pavone said it’s a double-edged sword for police; they want to take care of residential break-ins but high numbers of accidental calls take up resources.

“You’d rather have (officers) patrolling at night, having an active presence in the area, than being pulled to a building downtown three times a week because an alarm is going off,” he said. “This is not an attempt to generate revenue. This is an attempt to stop a small percent of users who cause this to take care of their systems.”

He said most false calls are just a few owners because there’s no penalty; just 20 percent of owners cause 80 percent of these calls.

More information on the fines is at www.rentonreporter.com/news/action-on-alarm-rules-delayed/.

More in News

Police still investigating Walmart parking lot shooting

A teenage boy was shot inside his vehicle, causing him to crash into the store.

Residents at SeaTac’s Firs Mobile Home Park received a closure notice for October 31, but most have chosen to stay in their homes. Photo by Melissa Hellmann
South King County coalition targets affordable housing

Rent and housing prices hit south end communities hard; SeaTac, Tukwila, Kent, Burien, Renton and Auburn are working to create organization like Eastside’s ARCH

New fire station expected to open next month

Station 15, which is almost 40 years in the making, will service the Kennydale/North Renton area

Law enforcement vehicles at the scene of a crash on I-5 near Northgate in Seattle after a chase that began in Lynnwood on Wednesday. (Washington State Department of Transportation)
Police: Little Harry was shot at, chased, then stole the cab

It started when he was a passenger in Lynnwood. It ended when he allegedly crashed the taxi in Seattle.

Microsoft will invest $500 million toward regional housing

Mayors of nine cities — including Auburn, Kent, Federal Way, Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Issaquah, Renton and Sammamish — have pledged to help

Local fundraisers, celebrations and more community news

Informational workshops began this week King County is hosting three free workshops… Continue reading

Renton toddlers graduate Kindering, and more community news…

Nominate an outstanding Renton woman The Renton Business & Professional Women Organization… Continue reading

Paraeducators and Office Professionals gather at Hazen High School to vote on a strike. Photo courtesy of SEIU Local 925
Issaquah School District disagrees with district office personnel and paraeducators unions

ISD office personnel and paraeducators file grievance against district.

Photo by Wayne Henry Swan.
                                The windstorm hit a neighborhood in Briarwood hard. Trees were down all around the area, one hitting a very unlucky truck.
City and residents respond to windstorm

The windstorm Sunday, Jan. 6, left some without power for several days. Others fought fallen trees.

Most Read