Arizona BFAA seeks state-wide reciprocity

Wednesday, January 1, 2003

TEMPE,Ariz. -Several years after an unsuccessful campaign for the adoption of a state-wide security licensing law, the Arizona Burglar and Fire Alarm Association is in discussions with several municipalities in the state to adopt a reciprocal licensing agreement that would lessen the administrative burden on its security company members.

Of the state’s 87 different municipalities, only 13 have ordinances that require licensing for security companies, said Susan Brenton, executive director of the ABFAA. Five communities have signed on so far, including Chandler, Phoenix and Bullhead, she said.

The reciprocal proposal would require companies to obtain a primary license in one municipality that would be valid in all jurisdictions participating in the program. Companies that operate on a state-wide basis must now pay for individual licenses in each jurisdiction, as well as be responsible for undergoing and paying for fingerprint and background checks where required.

“We’ve got one ordinance where it was already written and is going to be approved within the next couple of months,” Brenton said. “We are aiming to get all 13.”

The state licensing act failed by a narrow margin in the late 1990s because “cities did not want to give up their right to control the industry,” said David Green, president of Metrol Security Services in Phoenix and president of the ABFAA.

A sixth municipality that is looking into rewriting its ordinance to adopt the reciprocal licensing does not currently require licensure, Brenton said.