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File #: 1497-2017    Version: 1
Type: Ordinance Status: Passed
File created: 5/31/2017 In control: Rules & Reference Committee
On agenda: 6/19/2017 Final action: 6/20/2017
Title: To repeal Chapter 597 of the Columbus City Codes and enact new Chapter 597, updating the provisions for the licensing of alarm dealers and users in the City of Columbus.
Sponsors: Mitchell Brown
Attachments: 1. License and False Alarm Fee Schedule 1497-2017, 2. Full text of ordinance
Explanation

BACKGROUND

The purpose of this ordinance is to repeal Chapter 597 of the Columbus City Codes, pertaining to alarm users, dealers, and companies, and replace with revised Chapter 597, updating the provisions of the alarm code.

The alarm code was last updated in 2003, and most of the code dates to 1998. Since then, the code has become outdated in terms of user provisions, current and developing technologies, and inefficiencies over time. In order to update the code, the City will replace Chapter 597 in respect to alarm users, alarm agents, and alarm dealers/companies.

Some of the major changes include the renewal process for alarm users. Current code has a two-year renewal period for all users. The new code will decrease the license renewal period from two to one year. This will allow up-to-date information to be maintained in the licensing system, facilitate more efficient billing and collection of fees, and easier resolutions to disputes. It will also bifurcate the licensing fee structure by age, providing a discounted rate for City residents over the age of 70, and eliminating the renewal fees for those residents.

The new code will also eliminate licenses for alarm agents, or those that physically sell alarms to users. No other peer city of Columbus requires this license, and the method by which the City regulates compliance with background checks and reporting guidelines is already accomplished by having the dealers/companies report this information.

Also, alarm dealers/companies license renewal periods will increase from yearly to every two years. The City’s License Section has determined that industry checks and balances have been improved to the point where background checks and consumer protection are more prevalent, lessening the need for additional compliance inspection from the City.

Building on Council’s past efforts to update the City’s licensing code, these additional safeguards further Council’s efforts to moderni...

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