NSW False Alarm Charges Skyrocket 8x From March 30.
The False Alarm Charges Skyrocket in NSW – Charges payable for police attendance at false alarm events will skyrocket from March 30, increasing 8x to $A1600 per event.
The rule change comes via an amendment to the Police Act 1990 (section 209) which took effect on 1 January 2023. NSW Police has allowed a 3-month grace period to allow security providers to notify customers of the change, during which the charge payable has remained at $200. However, from 1 April 2023 charges payable will increase to $1600 as prescribed in the Act.
Currently the Police Act 1990 – Act Section 209(4) now details the following charges payable for false security alarms:
1) If, within any period of 28 days, any member of the NSW Police Force responds on more than one occasion to false alarms from the same security device installed in respect of a building (not being a dwelling), the commissioner is entitled to payment by an owner of the building of the prescribed charge for each additional occasion.
2) For the purposes of this section, an alarm is to be taken to be a false alarm, unless the owner of the building establishes that it was not a false alarm.
3) The regulations may specify the matters which the Commissioner is to take into account in determining who is to pay the Commissioner the prescribed charge when there is more than one owner of the building.
4) In this section – ‘building’ includes part of a building and ‘owner’ , in relation to a building, means:
a) the owner of the building, or
b) the occupier of the building.
From April 1 2023 ‘prescribed charge’ means $1600 or such other amount as may be prescribed by the regulations.
According to Kristy Walters, director, PoliceLink Command, this change brings NSW Police in line with other Emergency Services agencies in terms of charges for comparable false alarm activations.
Walters said the change is also intended to continue the strategy of reduction of false alarm responses by NSW Police Force, which then enables greater responsiveness to genuine alarm activations and other emergencies experienced in the community.
“The amendment to the applicable regulation will take effect on 1 January 2023,” Walters recently told ASIAL. “However, it is acknowledged that it is appropriate to provide a notice period of 3 months in order that ASIAL and impacted alarm companies can make necessary changes to their procedures and undertake necessary communications with their customers. Consequently, the change of the charge payable for false security alarm responses under s209 of the Police Act 1990 will be imposed from Saturday 1 April 2023.
“I would ask that you advise your members of these arrangements. From 1 April 2023, the NSW Police Force will send letters of demand to the relevant person where a member of the NSW Police Force responds to a false alarm on more than one occasion within any period of 28 days.”
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“NSW False Alarm Charges Skyrocket 8x From March 30.”