1062.08  FALSE ALARMS.
   (a)   Penalty Assessed. A penalty of twenty-five dollars ($25.00) shall be assessed for each false alarm to which the Divisions of Police and/or Fire respond. Such penalty shall be assessed against the holder of the permit or license for the alarm with which the false alarm is associated, or, in the event no such permit or license has been issued, the assessment shall be made against the owner of the premises upon which the alarm is located. Such penalty is applicable to all alarm systems, whether connected to City communication systems or not, except as follows:
      (1)   Notwithstanding the provisions assessing such penalty, no charge shall be made for the first three false alarms which may occur during any calendar year in an alarm system, either intrusion or fire, installed in a residential premises. As used in this chapter, "residential premises" mean only those premises that are used exclusively as a dwelling establishment. Premises that are a combination of both business and/or commercial premises together with a residential premises shall not qualify as residential premises under this paragraph, except in the case where the alarm system is installed in the residential portion of the premises that is occupied by a person who is unassociated with the business or commercial enterprise. In addition, alarm systems installed in individual units in apartments or condominium complexes shall qualify for this exemption, but alarm systems that are for the entire apartment or condominium complex shall not qualify for such exemption.
      (2)   Notwithstanding the provisions assessing such penalty, no charge shall be made for the first false alarm of any calendar year for any alarm system installed in a commercial, business or other nonresidential premises.
      (3)   There shall be no charge or penalty for a false alarm to which there is no response by the Division of Police or the Division of Eire, nor when the cause of the false alarm has been demonstrated to be lightning, windstorm or other such acts of God.
   (b)   Determination Procedure.  The responding units of the Divisions of Police and/or Fire shall determine whether the activation of an alarm system constitutes a false alarm or an alarm activated by an intruder, fire or fire-related problem. In malting such a determination, the appropriate Division shall consider a false alarm to be the activation of an alarm system caused by the negligence of the owner or other person authorized to be on the premises, by the faulty installation or repair of or the failure to maintain the alarm system, or by any other malfunction of such alarm system not specifically excepted here from.
   (c)   Appeal. Any person aggrieved by the determination of a Division that a false alarm has occurred, may, within thirty days from the assessment of the penalty therefor, appeal, in writing, to the Director of Public Safety. Within thirty days of the receipt of such a written appeal, the Director shall afford the appellant the opportunity to present evidence to indicate that such alarm was not a false alarm. The decision of the Director shall be final.
   (d)   Payment and Effect of Nonpayment of Penalty. Any penalty for a false alarm as provided for in this section, which remains unpaid for thirty days after the date of issuance of an invoice for such charge, shall constitute reason for and result in the cancellation of the license for or the removal of the appropriate alarm system, unless during such thirty-day period the owner of the premises or other person who is responsible for the alarm system appeals as provided for in subsection (c) hereof. If, at the conclusion of any appeal proceeding, it is determined that the penalty for a false alarm is to be upheld, the appellant shall have thirty days from such decision in which to make payment for such penalty.
(Ord. 76-79. Passed 12-20-76. )