As a service to our members, FARA and the Training/Communications Committee would like to provide a weekly update in the FARA Infolink on what measures are being taken around the U.S. and Canada to ensure the safety of public safety/government and industry employees and its members. We would also like to provide updates on accommodations various agencies are implementing for the public in regards, to collection of fees, fines, registration/permit procedures, etc. We need input from our members as to what their agency or industry is currently doing. Please reply to firstname.lastname@example.org. We realize that as the situation progresses, your procedures may change. Please keep us updated as these changes happen. Together perhaps we can weather the storm! Thank you!
Greenville NC Police Department
- Stay at home order extended until May 8 includes a 3 phase plan
- Continuing to bill for alarms and delinquent fees when applicable
- Hours cut to 20 per week for me, some got less, some more & some none
- Approved to telework at home (20 hours)
- City gave us 96 hours of emergency pay (FT emloyees) which we have to use to make up the difference in our regular pay, then we will have to use our sick and/or vacation
- Going to office to print letters and make deposits 2 times a week
- Mail delivery and pickup has been changed from twice a day to once a day
- Mayor has issued a Stop the Spread Order that restricts some movement for residents until April https://greenvillenc.gov/government/city-manager-s-office/public-information-office
- North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper has also announced a Stay at Home Order for the State of North Carolina that begins Monday, March 30, and is in effect until April 29, 2020 https://www.ncdhhs.gov/divisions/public-health/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19-response-north-carolina
- County website updates and resources https://www.pittcountync.gov/CivicAlerts.aspx
March 20, 2020 – Corona Virus Precautions
Our department is not allowing the public in. If someone comes, we will try to assist them but we wear gloves and go to the door or talk via intercom.
- Records is strictly limited access
- Dispatch access is more limited than usual
- We are emailing or mailing reports that are requested from Records
- We are teleworking when possible
- Limiting the number of people working in a certain space
- They have assigned detectives to be spread out at main headquarters and substations
- Gloves and masks are available
- Dispatch is asking if anyone has the symptoms or is sick for all calls. Requesting to meet officers outside and stay within 6 feet. Then requesting EMS for additional PPE. Supervisor also responding.
- We have a van for transporting those sick to jail. It is sanitized with a Clorox machine that we have after each use.
- Clorox machine used to sanitize common areas.
- Additional cleaning with Clorox for each work area
- We were provided bottles of hand sanitizer for each workstation
- Suspending most parking citations except handicapped
- Placed signs in front of restaurants for pickup only parking
- Parking officers and Animal Protective Services are separated and not allowed to work together
- City Hall has limited access but we have a few with access due to mail distribution
- Others have to call City hall in order to be allowed in for special circumstances
- Using tele serve when able for warrants, subpoenas, and reports
- Employees are staggering hours to maintain social distancing
- Officers cars are also being cleaned with the Clorox machine
- Property and Evidence-not releasing any property at this time
- Using slow time to clean out old files and organize
Sue Smeltzer- CAM – False Alarm Coordinator
Montgomery County MD
Montgomery County has been directed to telework for non-essential personnel, of course, positions like ours are a little more fluid. Although the staff is Teleworking most of the time, we do need to enter the office to conduct specific tasks.
When we do go into the office, we are opening incoming mail for payments and distributing work amongst staff, generating notices for our customers, issuing civil citations, issuing alarm business licenses, etc. We are directing the residents and businesses of the county to our email address for faster processing of their inquiries. Our hours of operation remain the same, although, most of us are probably working longer hours to provide the county with optimal service. Additionally, we are directing our customers to use our on-line services as a faster way of resolving their financial obligations. The goal here is to properly social distance and to eliminate as much contact, with the public, as possible.
Montgomery County has not, officially, closed our building to the public, however, some county facilities are closed such as Libraries, Recreation Centers, Public Gathering Places in Parks etc.
We continue to operate and meet the needs of the County without exposing ourselves unnecessarily.
Thanks, stay well and safe.
Montgomery County False Alarm Reduction Section
3.31.20 – Lost Coast Outpost – The Eureka Police Department is suspending false alarm billing for the month of March and April in response to the ongoing COVID-19 Public …
4.4.20 – Patch – The Phoenix Police Department continues to receive regular updates on the COVID-19 health situation. We are working with our City Manager …
Fairfax County VA Police Department
Fairfax County is Teleworking for non-essential personnel, of course, some positions like ours we are in the office. Since our office handles incoming mail for payments and credit cards this is reported daily. Our hours remain the same and we are expressing the need to our customers to use on-line services. Trying to eliminate as much contact with the public. County has not closed the building to the public. If our staff needs to work from home they can, however, all work tasks would need to come in the office to pick up work daily.
So far, the Board of Supervisors and County Executive has not closed all County Facilities. Some are closed such as Libraries, Recreation Centers, Public Gathering Places in Parks etc.
Thanks, Stay well and safe.
Fairfax County Police Department
Fire|City of Olathe, KS
Hope everyone is staying safe. As of today, I am working from home until further notice. I can go into the office once a week to take care of things I can’t do remotely. The community enhancement division is also working from home with one of them in the office each day.
The fire department will re-evaluate telecommuting each Friday. We have 34 confirmed cases and 1 death in Kansas. Several of my co-workers are also working remotely. We are business as usual except for collections and accounts that failed to register.
Tammy Foxworthy, CAM , Alarm Coordinator
At this moment, my city is not waiving anything and it is business as usual in that regard. However at this time Our City Hall is closed to the public, with only access to the lobby for those making payments or acquiring permits (not just alarms). They gave me the capability of connecting remotely to my desktop and database from home but from my personal laptop. (that are not enough laptops right now for everyone.) The city is monitoring everything and taking it day by day. So far the state of NC has only shut down public schools and asked everyone to stay home. Only those showing symptoms are required to stay home. All of this may change if the virus becomes more widespread in my area. Right now we have 3 confirmed cases in our county.
And this is our public page on COVID-19. https://fayettevillenc.gov/government/city-departments/corporate-communications/covid-19-information
Sherry Couey – Alarm Coordinator, C.A.M.
We are still sending letters and collecting money for permits and false alarms. We will not be sending any past due accounts to collections. We don’t have late fees but if we did they would be waived.
Kerri McDonald – Police Department, Alarm Unit
Austin TX Police Department
Section 7 of Austin’s Mayor Adler’s order of March 17 suspends all deadlines in the City Code until May 1, 2020. What that means to us is waiving all late fees associated with past due notices. Also, we have removed the due dates from all our invoices for the time being.
Rick Moore was so helpful and responded immediately to our request for help in adjusting our billing system.
We have adjusted our work group, also. Those who can are working from home, and those who cannot work from home are working four 10 hours days in the office.
Things change daily, so we remain flexible and are doing our best in this difficult time. I wish all the best to you as we continue to serve our citizens.
Please feel free to reach out to me with any other questions.
Lorie Shaw – Customer Service Supervisor, Alarm Administration
Howard County MD Department of Police
As of today (and of course this could change if the Governor implements a shelter in place directive):
One staff person will be onsite Monday –Friday
- to answer telephone calls from alarm users and alarm companies
- review the calls for service for alarm activations
- renewal notices for alarm users and alarm companies will be generated via daily auto processing
- false alarm fine payments will be processed and posted to the applicable accounts
If there is a shelter in place directive this may affect payments mailed to our PO Box and processed by our vendor
Eileen P. Skidmore
Vector has been monitoring the surrounding areas of all offices, including the acquired company ADS Security (based in Nashville TN). Each office has been closed to the public, as well as all service and sales appointments are vetted before confirmed (meaning a series of questions are asked before the appointment is confirmed to further protect the employees).
Gloves, hand sanitizer, Clorox wipes and Lysol has been provided to all offices to make sure all stations are sanitized twice daily, as well as the janitorial service sanitizing the offices air and buildings weekly.
Also, all essential employees are to check in daily and take their laptops home daily, in case of a shutdown and have to work from home.
Afornia Hawthorne Dispatch Reduction Manager/Central Station Supervisor
Sacramento County CA Sheriff’s Office Alarm Bureau
The Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office Alarm Bureau working hours will be limited based on the Public Health information noted below.
Sacramento County Public Health Order
As of March 19, 2020, at 11:59 p.m., the Sacramento County Health Officer is directing all individuals living in the county to stay at their place of residence except for essential activities. The legal order is based on the same directives of social distancing issued this week to slow the transmission of the disease, but it provides more detail and enforcement ability. The legal order limits activity, travel and business functions to only the most essential needs and is intended to protect those most vulnerable to the disease, slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, and preserve local healthcare capacity
The intent of this Order is to ensure that the maximum number of people self-isolate in their places of residence to the maximum extent feasible, while enabling essential services to continue, to slow the spread of COVID-19 to the maximum extent possible.
This Order shall become effective at 11:59 p.m. on March 19, 2020, and will continue to be in effect until 11:59 p.m. on April 7, 2020, or until it is extended, rescinded, superseded, or amended in writing by the Health Officer.
CryWolf – Central Square
Here is what CryWolf is working on with our many different agencies in regards to COVID-19:
So currently we’re working with agencies to cease placing accounts into non-response statuses for non-payment, sending them to collections and to no longer assess late fees as many residents and businesses have already been negatively impacted by this disease.
Amanda Mingione – Customer Success Manager
Charles County MD Government
Our unit is operating in normal status but we are practicing social distancing by allowing staff to telework while limiting the amount of workers coming into the office. We are answering phones, keeping up with mail and processing all paperwork and invoices. Of course this could change at anytime as expected. Be safe!
Sherry Herd, Administrator