Controversial non-response policy in L.A. delayed
January 16, 2003
LOS ANGELES - After hearing protests from alarm industry representatives, the Los Angeles City Council voted 12-1 on Jan. 14 to delay the implementation of a controversial non-response policy approved by the Los Angeles police commission.
Under the proposed policy, police would respond to a burglar alarm only if an eyewitness or video had verified the alarm.
The policy would not apply to human-activated panic alarms and burglar alarms at the cityÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s gun shops. Those alarms would still elicit a police response.
The vote means that the city council now has 21 days to hold hearings and either reject the new policy, which would require a two-thirds vote of the council, or let it stand.
The alarm industry had lobbied extensively against the new policy, and industry officials said they believed their efforts played a large role in the city councilÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s vote.
"ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s probably the best example of the industry coming together and really working the problem," said Steve Doyle, executive director of the Central Station Alarm Association.
Les Gold, a Los Angeles-based attorney representing the industry, said in his opinion, the police commission did not have the authority to establish this policy.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“In our opinion, what theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve done is not constitutional because effectively theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re amending the city ordinance which can only be done by the city council,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Gold.