[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Blairstown as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Uniform construction codes — See Ch. 87.
[Adopted as Sec. 10-5 (Ord. No. 88-20) of the 1977 Revised General Ordinances]
The purpose of this article is to alleviate those conditions within the Township of Blairstown, whereby policemen and fire personnel make unnecessary responses to alarms and thereby drain the manpower, time, space and facilities of the Township of Blairstown in providing responses to fire alarms and burglar alarms within the Township of Blairstown.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- ALARM BUSINESS
- Any business operated by a person, partnership, or corporation, for profit, which engages in the activity of altering, installing, leasing, maintaining, repairing, replacing, selling, servicing or responding to a fire or burglar alarm system, or which causes any of these activities to take place.
- ALARM DEVICE
- Any type of alarm-activating equipment which provides warning of burglary, intrusion, fire, flood, or like peril.
- ALARM SYSTEM
- The installation in one or more buildings of one or more alarm devices for the express purpose of giving visual and/or audible warning of an emergency such as burglary, intrusion, fire, flood, or like peril.
- ALARM USER
- Any person, firm, partnership, association, corporation, company or organization of any kind in possession or control of any building, structure or facility wherein an alarm device or system is maintained.
- FALSE ALARM
- An alarm signal eliciting a response by police or firefighters or any other public officials when a situation requiring a response by police or firefighters or any other public officials does not in fact exist, but excluding an alarm signal caused by violent conditions of nature or other extraordinary circumstances not reasonably subject to control by the alarm business or alarm user.
- INDEPENDENT SMOKE DETECTOR
- A device giving an audible alarm indicating smoke and/or fire within a structure and not connected to an alarm system or to any external sounding device outside of the structure.
No person shall install, operate or maintain any alarm system unless the alarm system has been registered with the Police Department. An alarm system shall be deemed registered at such time as a registration form supplied by the Police Department is completed as to all information requested therein. Among the information to be provided on the registration form is the following:
The name, address, telephone number of the owner, occupant, or user of the property upon which the alarm system is installed.
The name, address, and telephone number of the installer of the system.
The name, address, and telephone number of the maintainer of the system.
The type of system.
A list of the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of person(s) to be contacted in the event of an alarm or in an emergency situation determined by the Police Department.
A detailed description and location of the alarmed premises.
No further renewal registration shall be required unless and until there has occurred any material change in the information previously submitted with respect to any alarm system in which event it shall be the duty of the user of the alarm system, within 10 days of such material change, to file a supplemental or revised registration containing accurate, current information.
All pre-existing alarm systems shall comply with the registration requirements of this section within 60 days of the date of the final adoption of this article.
Each alarm system shall be installed utilizing discrete circuitry for multipurpose and single alarm systems to insure appropriate emergency response.
Any alarm system which requires for its operation electricity supplied by a public utility may be equipped with a battery rendering it operable in the event of a power outage if so desired by the property owners. Such battery backup system shall only be required for any alarm system which will trigger itself automatically in the event of a power outage.
Every burglar alarm system must be provided with a device which will shut off the alarm after 15 minutes of activation.
Every burglar alarm system not fitted with an external key switch shall be equipped with a time delay of at least 15 seconds which may include an audible signal of the same length of time, said time delay to be designed to prevent accidental activation of the system. The fifteen-second signal, if utilized, shall be audible only within the structure and not externally.
No alarm system may be connected directly to the alarm system panel located in the Police Department without the approval of the owner of the alarm system panel and Chief of Police or his designee.
No person shall install, cause to be installed, or permit to be installed, any alarm device, by whatever name known, which automatically selects a telephone line dedicated to the Police Department or Fire Department for the purpose of playing a recorded message to report any emergency.
In the event an alarm system, other than a fire or holdup alarm system, is tied into and/or serviced by a central station or answering service, upon activation of said alarm system, the central station or answering service shall verify the validity of the alarm prior to notifying the Police Department of same.
No police, fire, or other public department or official shall be responsible in any way for the resetting or maintenance of any alarm system.
No alarm business or person owing, using or possessing an alarm system shall cause or permit the giving of repeated false alarms whether intentional, accidental or otherwise.
A new homeowner, occupant or user possessing or using an alarm system shall be responsible for notifying and reregistering the system with the Police Department within 30 days of his purchase and/or transfer of title of the property.
All information submitted in compliance with this article shall be held in confidence and shall be deemed a record exempt from public disclosure pursuant to state statute(s). Any violation of confidentiality shall be deemed a violation of this article.
The provisions of this article shall not apply to any alarm system installed on property occupied by any Township, county or state or federal government agency or office, nor to an independent smoke detector as defined in § 56-2.
Any person who fails to register said alarm system as required by the provisions of this article is subject to a minimum fine of $50.
Any owner or user of an alarm system which experiences more than two false alarms within any one-year period shall be required to modify or improve said system with a retrofit which will incorporate into said system a mandatory audible fifteen-second signal which shall be designed to prevent accidental activation of the system.
Owners and users of alarm systems shall be subject to the following minimum fine schedule for false alarms:
Any owner or user of an alarm system who accidentally activates his/her burglar alarm and promptly notifies the Police Department within two minutes after activation will not be charged with a false alarm call. This grace period shall not apply to fire alarms.
Any owner or user of an alarm system who installs such a system not in compliance with this section is subject to a minimum fine of $50. Additionally, said owner or user may be required to remove such an alarm system.
Any owner or user of an alarm system shall be notified by the Township Police Department once two false alarms have occurred with said system.
Any person who intentionally causes the giving of a false alarm shall be in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:33-3.
A fee schedule for the use and service of the alarm system established at the Police Department of the Township is as follows:
[Amended by Ord. No. 93-10]
The person who receives the notice of violation or summons in reference to a violation of § 56-7 or their designated representative ("the alarm user") shall have the right to a hearing before the Township Committee to show cause why the penalty provisions of § 56-7 should not be enforced against said alarm user only if said alarm user files with the Township Clerk a written request for a hearing before the Township Committee within 10 days of the alarm user's receipt of said notice of violation or summons.
The hearing before the Township Committee shall be heard within 25 days of the receipt of the written notice by the Township Clerk or if no public meeting of the Township Committee is scheduled within 25 days, at the first public meeting thereafter.
The alarm user may, at the request of the Township Committee, be required to provide evidence of his or her good faith efforts to cure, remedy or replace the malfunctioning alarm system.
[Adopted as Sec. 10-6 (Ord. No. 92-11) of the 1977 Revised General Ordinances]
All one- and two-family residences within the Township shall, within six months of the enactment of this article, install and maintain in good working order smoke sensitive alarms or smoke detectors on each level of that residence.
No owner, or agent of any owner, shall sell, convey or transfer title, or permit a person or family to begin a new occupancy of a portion or the entirety of any one- and two-family residential premises within the Township unless and until that owner or agent of any owner applies for and obtains a certification of smoke detector compliance in compliance with this article.
The Department of Fire Inspections, through its employees, and/or the Fire Subcode Official shall be authorized to inspect residential premises upon the request of the owner (or the owner's agent) of the residential premises in question and the payment to the Township of an application fee of $25. The inspector shall determine if an operable and operating smoke detector exists on each level of the residential premises.
All persons described in § 56-13 above, as the local enforcement agency responsible for enforcing the Uniform Fire Safety Act (P.L. 1983, c. 383), shall also be permitted to issue the certification of smoke detector compliance on such forms as are approved by the Fire Safety Bureau of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs when the residential premises inspected are found to be in compliance with § 56-3.
Editor's Note: See N.J.S.A. 52:27D-192 et seq.