Security Alarm Owners In Everett To Again Face Fees And False Alarm Fines

November 20, 2018

Everett, Everett Government


People who have burglar or hold up alarms in Everett, Washington may have to get an annual alarm permit starting next year.

After taking a break from enforcing a false alarm ordinance for the past 27 years the City of Everett is about to update and enforce rules for business and home owners who have burglary or robbery alarm systems. At this point it appears fire alarms are not included in the new enforcement efforts.

In 1978 the City of Everett enacted an ordinance that said anyone with a burglary or robbery alarm had to notify the Everett Police Department of its existence. In addition the alarm owner had to pay a fine if there were multiple false alarms within a six month period. That program ran along until 1991. That year a change in dispatching software meant that false alarms were no longer automatically tracked and the false alarm fines went away.

With new dispatching software that can track false alarms and the city in need of additional revenue as it faces an ongoing budget deficit, alarm fees and fines are coming back. At the Wednesday Everett City Council meeting there will be a first reading of an ordinance that repeals the rules put in place in 1978 and sets new fees to have an alarm and fines for multiple false alarms in a given time period.

If the ordinance passes as presented every person who has a burglary or robbery alarm will have to have a permit for that alarm. The permit will be good for a calendar year and has to be renewed annually.

  • The registration fee for a home alarm will be $30.00
  • The registration fee for a business alarm will be $50.00
  • The registration fee will be reduced to $15.00 for residential use by senior citizens 65 or older and those with a permanent disability
  • Registered non profit groups or agencies will be charged a reduced fee of $25.00

    As far as violations go it is considered a violation if:

  • A false alarm occurs on the alarm users property
  • The property has an audible alarm which can sound continually for more than 15 minutes
  • The property uses an automated dialer with a recorded message to report he alarm to the 911 center
  • Fail to pay for or acquire a permit for the alarm, fail to renew the permit
  • Fail to follow other parts of the city’s alarm ordinance

    Civil penalties for false alarms are as follows for any false alarms occurring in a 12 month period:

  • First false panic/duress/robbery/holdup/silent alarm: $200.00
  • Each subsequent false panic/duress/robbery/holdup/silent alarm: $200.00
  • First false alarm, other alarms: $100.00
  • Each subsequent false other alarms: $100.00

    Civil penalties for false alarms at locations not registered with the city will be doubled and the user will be required to obtain an alarm permit. Other civil penalties may be imposed and the city is considering developing an Alarm User Awareness Class that would educate alarm users and where attendance could be an alternative to a first false alarm fine.

    You can click here to see the full alarm ordinance as it is being presented to the Everett City Council at their Wednesday meeting. A public hearing and vote on the ordinance is currently scheduled for December 5th.

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