[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee (now Township Council) of the Township of East Hanover 4-20-1982 by Ord. No. 9-1982. Amendments noted where applicable.]
The purpose of this chapter is to provide standards and regulations for the various types of intrusion, burglar, fire and other emergency alarm equipment requiring response thereto by the Police Department, Fire Department or any other township agency.
The provisions of this chapter shall apply to alarm businesses and to any person who owns, operates or maintains an alarm system as defined herein.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- Any person, or entity, authorized by another person or entity to act on behalf of or for such party; or any person or entity entrusted with another's business or one who represents and acts for another under any agency relationship; or any business representative whose function it is to bring about, modify, affect, accept performance of or terminate the contractual obligations on behalf of another; or anyone whom another, either intentionally, by want of ordinary care or by his manifestations, induces third persons into believing that said person or entity is the agent of the other.
- ALARM BUSINESS
- Any business operated by a person for a profit which engages in the activity of selling, leasing, installing, servicing, repairing or responding to an alarm system or which causes any of these activities to take place.
- ALARM CONSOLE
- The approved control panel of devices located within the East Hanover Police Department which gives a visual or audible response, or both, to a signal from any alarm system.
- ALARM SIGNAL
- Any signal produced by an alarm system to indicate the presence of an emergency and to which the Police Department or Fire Department may be expected to respond.
- ALARM SYSTEM OR DEVICE
- Any equipment designed to signal the presence of an emergency to which the Police Department or Fire Department may be expected to respond. The term "alarm system or device" shall include the terms "dial alarm system," direct alarm system," "digital communicator" and "local alarm system," as those terms are defined herein.
- CHIEF OF POLICE
- The Chief of Police of the Township of East Hanover.
- CONSOLE CONTRACTOR
- The person under contract with the Township of East Hanover to install, operate and maintain the alarm console.
- DIAL ALARM SYSTEM
- Any alarm system that automatically or electronically selects a telephone trunk line of the Police Department or Fire Department and then delivers a signal or prerecorded message.
- DIGITAL COMMUNICATOR
- The device or devices that can be connected to a dial alarm system which enable that system to deliver a signal to the police alarm console via nondedicated telephone lines.
- DIRECT ALARM SYSTEM
- Any alarm system connected directly by leased telephone lines from a specific location to the alarm console.
- A robbery, burglary, theft, fire or other peril that is occurring, is about to occur or has just occurred.
- Anyone employed by another party having charge of any activities, acts or business of the party for whom he is employed; or any person working for salary or wages paid, or to be paid, by the employer; or any person performing services for another who is subject to the control and direction of that party in the performance of said services.
- FALSE ALARM
- Any signal produced by an alarm system, by inadvertence, negligence, malfunction, improper installation or the act of a person, other than to signal the presence of an actual emergency. This shall not include trouble alarms.
- FIRE DEPARTMENT
- The Fire Department of the Township of East Hanover.
- INDEPENDENT CONTRACTOR
- One who, exercising an independent employment, contracts to do work according to his own methods and without being subject to the direct control of the party for whom he is performing such services, except as the result of the work being performed; or anyone who has the right to employ and direct the action of other workmen independently of the party for whom the services are being performed and is, himself, freed from any superior authority to specify how the work shall be done or what the laborers shall do as it progresses.
- LOCAL ALARM SYSTEM
- Any alarm system producing an audible or visible signal designed to be heard or seen by persons outside the protected area, but shall not include alarm systems connected solely within a properly registered motor vehicle.
- Any person who owns or maintains an alarm system and has obtained a permit in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
- Any individual, partnership, corporation, association or any other private or business entity.
- POLICE DEPARTMENT
- The Police Department of the Township of East Hanover.
- A permittee whose alarm system stimulates a response by the alarm console in police headquarters.
- The Township of East Hanover or any department, agency or officer authorized to act on its behalf.
- TROUBLE ALARM
- A signal received by the alarm console from a direct alarm indicating an interruption or malfunction of the telephone transmission lines or related equipment.
Editor's Note: The former definition of "licensee," which immediately followed this definition, was repealed 2-17-1994 by Ord. No. 4-1994.
The Township of East Hanover, its various departments, agencies, officials and employees shall be under no duty or obligation to any permittee, licensee or console contractor hereunder, or to any other person or persons, with respect to the adequacy, operation, installation, repair or maintenance of the alarm console or related equipment, or any alarm system regulated herein, and assumes no liability in connection herewith. Upon acceptance of any permit, license or contract hereunder, the permittee, licensee or console contractor agrees to hold and save harmless the Township of East Hanover, its departments, agencies, officials and employees from any liability or damages suffered as a result of or arising out of improper or faulty installation, operation or maintenance of any alarm system or the improper or faulty operation or maintenance of the alarm console at police headquarters.
The alarm console provided for in this chapter shall contain equipment and be of a design approved by the Chief of Police of the Township of East Hanover.
The console contractor selected to install and maintain the alarm console shall be determined by public bid in accordance with the Local Public Contracts Law, N.J.S.A. 40A:11-1 et seq., and shall be bound by the terms of this chapter as well as the terms of the contract. In the event of contradiction or conflict, this chapter shall control.
The alarm console and related equipment as it exists at the time of adoption of this chapter shall remain intact and operational until such time as a contract is awarded and replacement equipment is installed. In the event that the present console owner is not awarded a contract, he shall be subject to the same provisions of this chapter concerning removal as set forth in Subsection I of this section.
Determination of successful bidder.
The competitive basis for determination of the successful bidder shall be on the basis of the lowest total user charge to subscriber permittees over the terms of the contract. Equal consideration, however, shall be given to the following:
The financial stability of the bidder.
The bidder's experience in the alarm field with other municipalities.
The bidder's service capability on a twenty-four-hour basis.
The proximity of the bidder's office to the municipal building as bearing on service and repair availability and response time.
The bidder's past performance in this or other municipalities.
Such other factors as the Township Committee shall deem relevant and in the best interests of the municipality.
The Township Committee reserves the right to refuse all bids.
The console contractor shall locate and relocate said console if necessary at the request and under the supervision of the Chief of Police at no cost to the Township of East Hanover.
Any connection to the alarm console shall be of a type inspected and approved by the Chief of Police or his designated representative, and any person aggrieved by said decision may appeal said decision to the Township Council by filing a written notice of appeal with the Township Clerk within 10 days after the date of said decision.
All direct alarm systems and dial alarm systems equipped with digital communicators existing at the time the alarm console contract takes effect shall be connected to the new console by the console contractor, and no installation or transfer fee shall be charged.
The console contractor shall be permitted to charge new subscribers an installation fee and all subscribers a monthly maintenance fee as specified in the terms of the contract. However, no fees shall be charged to the Township of East Hanover or the East Hanover Township and Hanover Park Regional Boards of Education for existing or future systems in public buildings.
Upon termination of the contract for any reason, the console contractor shall have the right to remove the alarm console system as may be owned by the contractor at no expense to the township, in a manner and at the time directed by the Chief of Police [not later than 30 days after the termination date] to permit installation or a substitute console system by a successor-approved contractor. Any equipment which is not removed within the allotted time shall become the property of the Township of East Hanover, and the contractor shall have no further claim or right thereto or any part thereof. In no event, however, shall the township be without the full use of an alarm console, and no equipment shall be removed or disconnected until such time as it is replaced.
[Amended 2-17-1994 by Ord. No. 4-1994]
Thirty days after the effective date of this chapter, all agents or employees of an alarm business, or independent contractors working for an alarm business, who sell, lease, install, repair, replace, alter, service, maintain or respond to an alarm system in the Township of East Hanover shall be registered with the Police Department, and such registration shall be the joint obligation of the agent, employee or independent contractor and the alarm business. The registration shall include at least the name and address of the agent, employee or independent contractor; the name of the alarm business; criminal convictions, if any, of the agent, employee or independent contractor; the length and type of the agent's, employee's or independent contractor's experience in the alarm industry in general and with the specific alarm business; and such other information as may be prescribed by the Chief of Police or his designated representative.
No agent, employee or independent contractor of or working with or for an alarm business shall perform, nor shall an alarm business permit an agent, employee or independent contractor to perform, any functions of an alarm business within the Township of East Hanover without first being registered as required in this section.
The alarm business shall issue identification badges or cards to all its registered agents, employees or independent contractors. The identification badge or card shall contain the agent's, employee's or independent contractor's photograph and physical description, as well as the name and address of the licensed alarm business, and shall be displayed by the agent, employee or independent contractor upon entering any premises for the purpose of performing any function of the alarm business. The agent, employee or independent contractor shall also be required to present said badge or card to any police officer of the Township of East Hanover upon request.
The alarm business shall immediately notify the Chief of Police, in writing, of the termination of employment of any such registered agent, employee or independent contractor, and it shall be the responsibility of the alarm business to secure the return of the identification badge or card from the terminated agent, employee or independent contractor. Any agent, employee or independent contractor so terminated for any reason shall immediately return the identification badge or card to the licensee. Failure to do so within five days of termination of employment shall be deemed a violation of this chapter.
No person shall install or operate an alarm system at any time after 60 days after the effective date of this chapter without first having obtained a permit as hereinafter provided.
Application for a permit shall be made on forms furnished by the Police Department and shall contain such information as the Chief of Police may reasonably require.
There shall be an annual fee of $20 for permits to operate a dial-alarm-type system to cover the cost of specific telephone lines necessary for their use. The required fee shall accompany the application form.
All permits issued under this section shall expire on January 31 next succeeding the date issued and shall not be valid after said date. All renewal permit applications must be submitted by January 15 of each year, accompanied by an application fee.
The Chief of Police is the designated official of the township to issue, renew, remove or suspend permits under this section.
An application for a permit or permit renewal may be denied by the Chief of Police if he disapproves of the equipment intended to be used or continued by the applicant or if the applicant has violated or refuses to comply with any provisions of this chapter or any rules or regulations promulgated in accordance therewith.
The Chief of Police may revoke or suspend a permit issued under this section for failure or refusal of the permittee to comply with any provisions of this chapter or any rule or regulation promulgated in accordance therewith.
All permits as may be granted hereunder shall be accepted upon the express condition that the permittee shall defend, indemnify and save harmless the Township of East Hanover and its authorized officials, agents and employees from and against all damages, costs, expenses and liability arising out of or connected with the installation, operation, maintenance or malfunction of the alarm system, or any act or omission connected therewith.
All permittees shall comply with all other provisions of this chapter and all rules and regulations promulgated in accordance therewith.
Effective one year after the effective date of this chapter, no person shall use or cause or permit to be used any dial alarm system or device except and unless such system is equipped with a digital communicator device.
All existing owners and users of dial alarm systems shall obtain a permit for same in the manner set forth in § 55-8 of this chapter within 60 days after the effective date of this chapter. After 60 days after the effective date of this chapter, no dial alarm application will be accepted, and no new dial alarm system installations will be permitted except and unless said dial alarm system shall be equipped with a digital communicator.
No dial alarm system shall be permitted unless of a type approved by the Chief of Police and compatible with all peripheral equipment. Any such alarm system must have approval of the New Jersey Bell Telephone Company or its successor.
All dial alarms shall be coded to dial a special separate number, which number can be obtained from the Chief of Police or his designated representative, and no dial alarm shall be coded to dial the general police emergency number or any other township number not specifically dedicated to such use. Existing dial alarm owners issued a permit under this chapter may continue to dial the general police number until modified to a digital communicator or until one year after the effective date of this chapter, whichever shall occur first. After one year after the effective date of this chapter, no dial alarm shall dial any number other than the special number dedicated to the use of dial alarms.
All dial alarms shall be capable of disconnection to enable the owner to call police headquarters to indicate that a false alarm has occurred.
All dial alarm owners shall comply with all other applicable provisions of this chapter.
All owners and users of local alarms shall obtain a permit as required by § 55-8 of this chapter.
A local alarm system sounding an audible alarm shall have built into its mechanism a device that shall automatically shut off the audible signal within 30 minutes.
Local alarm permittees shall comply with all other applicable provisions of this chapter.
In the case of false alarms, any person having knowledge thereof shall immediately notify the Police Department of such error or malfunction.
The Chief of Police shall keep a record of all Police Department responses to alarms and shall distinguish between actual and false alarms.
In the event of the occurrence of three false alarms in a calendar year, the permittee shall, within five days after written notice to do so, submit a written report to the Chief of Police setting forth the causes of the false alarms, the corrective action taken, a statement as to whether the alarm system has been inspected by an alarm service company and such other information as the Chief of Police may reasonably require.
[Amended 10-19-1989 by Ord. No. 35-1989]
[Amended 10-19-1989 by Ord. No. 35-1989; 5-3-1990 by Ord. No. 9-1990]
Said service fee shall be payable to the township within 30 days of service of a written notice of said false alarm on the permittee by first-class postage-prepaid mail.
Disconnection and deactivation.
In addition to the service fees, where investigation of the Police Department discloses that false alarms continue to result due to failure of the permittee to take corrective action to avoid false alarms, or in the event that the permittee shall fail to remit the required service fee, the permittee shall disconnect and deactivate the alarm system within 10 days after written notice from the Chief of Police to do so, and the Chief of Police is hereby authorized to disconnect the permittee's system from the alarm console. Each and every day that said permittee shall fail to comply shall constitute a separate offense.
The permittee shall have the right to a hearing before the Township Committee to show cause why such action should not be taken by filing a written request with the Township Clerk within 10 days after receipt of the notice to disconnect and deactivate. A hearing on the appeal of the permittee shall be held by the Township Committee within 25 days after the filing of the written request.
All alarm systems shall meet standards and shall be installed in accordance with all applicable state and municipal laws, ordinances, rules and regulations.
No fire alarm system shall be finally approved and no permit shall be issued until and unless said system shall first be inspected and approved by the Fire Chief of the Township of East Hanover or his designated representative.
Any unauthorized equipment may be disconnected by the Chief of Police or his designated representative for noncompliance with this chapter, and any person installing or maintaining unauthorized equipment shall be prosecuted for violation of this chapter, and each and every day that said equipment is in operation shall be considered a separate violation.
The console contractor, and any permittee or licensee owning or servicing an alarm system which is connected to the alarm console, shall provide for a representative to be on call at all times and shall, within eight hours notification by the Police Department of any malfunction of any equipment, respond and repair said malfunction or deactivate any system that cannot be repaired until said repairs are made.
It shall be unlawful for any alarm system or device to ring out or put forth any sound for a period in excess of 30 minutes.
All components of alarm systems must be maintained by the owner in good repair, and when evidence exists that there has been failure to comply with the operational requirement of this chapter, the Chief of Police or his designated representative is then authorized to demand that such device be disconnected until such time as compliance is reestablished.
The sensory mechanism of alarm systems shall be adjusted so as to suppress false indication and not to be activated by impulses due to pressure changes in water pipes, short flashes of light, wind, noises, rattling or vibration of doors or windows or other forces unrelated to general alarms. This subsection shall not be construed to in any way interfere with the proper operation of central alarm stations.
All permittees shall be required to supply the Police Department with the name of a person or persons who can be contacted at any time of day or night, concerning activated alarms. A permittee or his representative shall respond to the source of an alarm as promptly as possible after activation of such device and shall contact the Police Department or Fire Department dispatched to the scene. He shall relieve the policeman or fireman in charge whenever there is no apparent fire or criminal activity at the scene of the alarm and shall reset or deactivate the system.
All permittees shall, by acceptance of the permit, be deemed as having consented to inspection of the premises on which said alarm system or related equipment is installed, at reasonable hours, by the Chief of Police or Fire Chief, or their designated representatives. This provision shall not be construed to impose a duty on the township or its officials to make inspections or to relieve the permittee from inspecting, testing and maintaining his own alarm system.
Any person testing any alarm system covered under the terms of this chapter shall notify the Police Department immediately prior to and after the testing.
All alarm systems covered under the terms of this chapter shall have an auxiliary battery power supply which automatically engages to prevent false alarms due to power failures.
If the location of the fire or police communication facilities should be changed at any time, no console contractor, permittee or licensee shall be permitted to charge the township with any resulting costs of moving alarm equipment.
Any alarm produced by an alarm system shall clearly distinguish between intrusion-related alarms and fire-related alarms. No alarm system shall be permitted that produces the same or similar signal for both perils.
The Chief of Police may from time to time promulgate rules and regulations supplementing this chapter, in order to provide for recordkeeping and efficient management of systems and persons controlled by the provisions of this chapter.
Any person found guilty in the Municipal Court of the Township of East Hanover for violation of any of the terms of this chapter shall be subject to a fine of not more than $500 or imprisonment for a period not exceeding 90 days, or both.