The following was among actions taken at the Nov. 24 meeting of the Fairfax City Council. For more information, call 385-7855.
ALARM ORDINANCE -- The council voted to exempt private homes from a $25 city registration fee required to be paid by owners of security alarm systems that alert the police department to burglaries and hold-ups.
They also voted to exempt homeowners from penalties for false alarms.
This spring, the council decided to levy fees ranging from $25 to $50 per alarm for any home or business with more than three false burglar or hold-up alarms in a year, to reflect the cost to the city of responding to them.
But private homeowners later protested that the ordinance discouraged them from installing such alarms at their houses, and said business alarms account for most of the false calls police receive. The council therefore voted unanimously Tuesday to exempt homes from the fees, but to continue them for businesses.
In 1985, police responded to 1,612 security system alarms. Of these, 75 were from homes and the rest from businesses. Police estimate that all but five of the 1,612 alarms were false, according to Capt. John Skinner.
"It's a great burden on any department," he said this week, noting that at least two cruisers respond to each alarm.