Sparks False Alarms

Thousands of false alarms last year have prompted the Sparks City Council to unanimously approve a change in the way police respond to alarms from homes and businesses.

It hired a company to monitor burglar and panic alarms. The company will attempt to contact the alarm site or user. It that's unsuccessful, police will be dispatched.

The ordinance also sets a 25-dollar alarm registration fee for homes and businesses -- ten dollars for seniors.

A false alarm will be billed 75 dollars. After three false alarms, police will not respond until the person attends a class on alarm use.

Sparks police responded to nearly 4,000 false alarms last year, costing the city an estimated 220,00 dollars.

Officials say about 99 out of every 100 alarms is false.