Austin, Texas, Adjusts False Alarm Policy

Austin, Texas, like so many cities, is dealing with the issue of false alarms by turning to fiscal deterrents.

The city, on Thursday, decided in a city council meeting to increase the fines levied to homeowners and business owners for false alarms.

The council's policy now allows three false alarms to go unfined, but the fourth and fifth offenses will each cost $50. The fine structure increases to $75 and then to $100 for subsequent false alarms.

The council also increased the price of the alarm permit from $25 to $30 in an effort to recoup emergency costs associated with responding to false alarms.

According to an article from a local Austin television station, KXAN-TV, the city is seeing a false alarm percentage of 80 percent.