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The City of West Covina Launches New Alarm Program

Post Date:12/17/2018 3:30 PM

For Immediate Release                                                    Contact: Russell Narahara

December 17, 2018                                                                             Management Analyst II

                                                                                                                  (626) 939-8844

The City of West Covina Launches New Alarm Program

WEST COVINA, December 17, 2018 - The City of West Covina’s new Alarm Program was implemented on December 12, 2018.  To reduce false alarms within the City of West Covina, the City has updated its alarm ordinances and collaborated with PM AM Corporation to implement and administer the False Alarm Management and Reduction Solution (FAMS) platform.  The partnership will provide educational training for residents and business owners to learn how to prevent false alarms.  PM AM is a national company with expertise in this area and will be responsible for alarm permit registrations, false alarm billings, and educational materials. 

Under the new program, alarm systems owned by residents and businesses that summon a Police Department response and alarm systems required by the California Fire Code that summon a Fire Department response are now required to register their alarm system.  Residential smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors within residential (single or multi-family) homes do not require an alarm permit. 

The goal of the Alarm Program and the City’s partnership with PM AM is to create a balance between the use of Police and Fire Department resources to respond to alarm calls while holding the alarm monitoring companies accountable for alarm system installations and the alarm system owners accountable for the operation and maintenance of their alarm system.  Each year, thousands of alarm calls originate from residential and commercial properties where over 95% of alarm calls result in a false alarm due to equipment malfunction, poor installation, or user errors.  False alarms create a serious burden on the limited Police Department and Fire Department resources that result in longer response times to other legitimate crimes, emergency medical services (EMS) calls, or fires. 

The alarm registration process began on December 12, 2018, and all alarm systems will have to be registered by February 1, 2019.  The cost to register an alarm system is $10 per year.  There is $25 late charge for not registering by February 1, 2019, and the schedule of graduated fines for the response to a false alarm is more substantial without an alarm permit.  To register for an alarm permit, please visit www.westcovina.org/alarm or call PM AM at (888) 421-9155 for alarm systems that summon the Police Department or (888) 339-5538 for alarm systems that summon the Fire Department.  PM AM provides customer support from 6:30am – 3:30pm, Monday – Friday and provides an automated voicemail system afterhours.  Alarm permits are not issued at West Covina City Hall.

 

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