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(a) If the Tax Collector revokes or suspends an alarm license, assesses a penalty, or denies the issuance, renewal or reinstatement of an alarm license, the Tax Collector shall send written notice of the action and a statement of the right to an appeal to either the affected applicant or alarm user and the alarm installation company and/or monitoring company.
(b) The alarm user, alarm installation company or monitoring company may, within 15 days from the date the assessment of a fee or a license revocation is served, protest the assessment of the fee or license revocation by either (1) requesting a hearing to be conducted by mail, or (2) requesting an in-person hearing. If a protest is not filed within 15 days as provided in this Section, the decision of the Tax Collector shall be final.
(1) Hearing by Mail. An alarm user, alarm installation company or monitoring company may protest the assessment of a fee or license revocation by paying the fee, if any, and requesting a hearing to be conducted by mail from the Tax Collector. The request must be made in writing, in the format prescribed by the Tax Collector. Protests must be mailed together with the fee, if any, to the Office of the Treasurer & Tax Collector at the address provided on the assessment of a fee or license revocation. The request for a hearing by mail must specify the basis for the protest in detail and must be accompanied by evidence supporting the protest. The Tax Collector may request that the protesting party provide any additional information necessary to decide the validity of the assessment of a fee or license revocation. The Tax Collector shall evaluate the protest and notify the protesting party of the decision by mail within 30 days of receipt by the Tax Collector of all information and evidence. The notice shall include a copy of the Tax Collector's written determination. The Tax Collector's decision shall be final.
(2) In-Person Administrative Hearing. An alarm user, alarm installation company or monitoring company may protest the assessment of a fee or license revocation by paying the fee, if any, and filing a petition for redetermination pursuant to Section 6.13-1 of the Business and Tax Regulations Code. A hearing on the petition for redetermination of an assessment of a fee or license revocation shall proceed in the same manner as a petition for redetermination of a tax. Any reference in Sections 6.13-1et seq. to taxes, penalties or interest shall be deemed to also apply to the hearing of an assessment of a fee or license revocation under this Article. If the protesting party fails to appear for the hearing, a default judgment shall be entered against the party. The party will automatically be deemed liable for the fee or to have consented to the license revocation, together with any additional fees and interest.
(3) In any hearing conducted under subsections (b) (1) or (b)(2), the burden of proof shall be on the person protesting the assessment of a fee or license revocation to demonstrate that the assessment of the fee or the revocation of the license was arbitrary and capricious or beyond the jurisdiction of the Tax Collector.
(c) The Tax Collector or the hearing officer may adjust the count of false alarms based on:
(1) Evidence that a false alarm was caused by an Act of God;
(2) Evidence that a false alarm was caused by action of the telephone company;
(3) Evidence that a false alarm was caused by a power outage lasting longer than four (4) hours;
(4) Evidence that the alarm dispatch request was not a false alarm;
(5) Evidence that the police officer response was not completed in a timely fashion; and/or
(6) In determining the number of false alarms, multiple alarms occurring in any twenty-four (24) hour period may, in the Tax Collector's or the hearing officer's discretion, be counted as one false alarm, to allow the alarm user time to take corrective action unless the false alarms are directly caused by the alarm user.
(e) With respect to penalties imposed against an alarm installation company or monitoring company, the Tax Collector or the hearing officer may take into consideration whether the alarm company had engaged in a pattern of violations.
(Added by Ord. 154-02, File No. 021078, App. 7/12/2002; amended by Ord. 30-03, File No. 021995, App. 2/28/2003; Ord. 175-13 , File No. 130551, App. 8/2/2013, Eff. 9/1/2013)