- Associated Press - Thursday, October 1, 2015

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - New Orleans police are planning to roll out a new system for dealing with false burglar alarms with residents and businesses facing steeper fines that culminate with their alarm systems being ignored by officers.

A recent press release noted there will be no fee for a first offense, a $75 fine for a second offense, $150 fines for the third and fourth offenses after which New Orleans police will not respond.

The New Orleans Advocate reports (https://bit.ly/1QLjFw0) police have touted the program as a way to reduce the strain on the police force and increase its ability to respond to emergencies.

The data behind false alarms supports the police department’s claim. Based on 2014 statistics, NOPD could earn nearly $2 million per year in fines and save almost 4,000 hours of time.

The new program promises two benefits to NOPD: less time spent chasing false alarms and fine money for the city. It’s difficult to predict how this program will change behavior, but it’s possible to analyze 2014’s data to evaluate how much time and money the city will earn over the course of a year if behavior does not change at all.

This provides a minimum floor for the program’s benefits with everything else being lagniappe.

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Information from: The New Orleans Advocate, https://www.neworleansadvocate.com

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