False Alarms

False Alarms

The Public Safety Department supports and encourages the use of alarm systems in homes and businesses. Unfortunately, we respond to hundreds of false alarms every year due to owner error, faulty equipment, and/or faulty installation. False alarms take an officer’s time and energy away from where they are truly needed.


On November 18, 1985, the City of East Grand Rapids enacted a false alarm ordinance in an effort to decrease the Department’s responses to an ever-increasing number of false alarms. Since that time, the number of false alarms has dramatically declined. The ordinance is designed to identify repeat false alarms and defer the cost of the Public Safety Department’s response. The fee schedule is as follows:

Number of Calls Charge
First Call in Calendar Year N/A
Second Call in Calendar Year $50
Third Call in Calendar Year $100
Fourth Call in Calendar Year $200

If the alarm user fails to pay within 30 days after billing, the unpaid fee shall be added to and made a part of the next city tax bill against the subject premises and collected in the same manner as provided by law for the collection of city taxes on real estate.


An alarm user may file a written notice of appeal to the Director of Public Safety within 10 days of receipt of the bill. Appeals shall be heard by the director within 20 days after the notice of appeal is filed. The director has the authority to waive the fee if it is determined the alarm user or alarm business has made a good faith effort to determine the cause of the alarm and to correct the problem.

More Information

Any questions pertaining to false alarms should be directed to the office manager at 616-949-7010.
For additional information on false alarms and alarm systems, visit False Alarm Reduction Association.