Data coming out of police departments and other venues across the country continue to reinforce that local ordinances should offer two or fewer free false dispatch calls to police before enforcing fines. There has been growing evidence that the vast majority of customers are not affected because they don’t have more than two of these calls annually.
That’s a colossal positive statistic for the electronic security industry and one we should be proud of. Examples abound. In Phoenix, 95.55% of permit holders had one or less false alarms (84.9% had zero). In Montgomery County, MD, 89.7% had one or less (85.8% had zero). This means our industry is doing a great job policing itself and working closely with customers so they understand their systems and operate them properly.
We’d like to see those statistics become a larger and larger national trend. It’s certainly possible with the help from local and state associations, as well as industry leadership. We need everyone to step forward and work locally on strong ordinances.
The vast majority of new ordinances are being set with one or two free false dispatches. But we also need to recognize that local politics do prevail and some want the flexibility to set this number higher.
At the state level, 10 state police chiefs associations have adopted an ordinance with one or two free dispatches as the limit, before establishing penalties. Police resources and manpower are at an all-time minimum, and we must recognize the threat of non-response is real. Our support of a 1-2 limit per year also shows law enforcement that we understand what they are going through and will work with them towards solutions. This enhances our relationship.
Our focus should be the chronic abuser. Lowering the number of freebies gets them to corrective action more quickly (fines). We believe it’s the way to go, and encourage you to join us in the effort to target chronic abusers.