Kamloops Chamber wants city to reconsider changes to false alarm bylaw

By Tanya Cronin
November 3, 2016 - 4:39pm Updated: November 3, 2016 - 5:24pm

KAMLOOPS — The President of the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce is voicing concerns about the city's decision to 'crack down' on false break-in and panic alarms.

False alarms are costing the city thousands of dollars every year, and tying up RCMP resources. This week council took steps to change that, telling staff to move forward on bylaw changes that would result in stiffer fines and allow RCMP to choose not to respond in certain cases of repeat false calls. Ryan Scorgie says the amendment would significantly impact small businesses. 

"As a small business owner or a homeowner, having a potential for $1,000 fine when it's maybe an error, there's going to be problems with that from a legal perspective we could see some issues with that, some challenges on those fines for both the security companies and homeowners when you're looking at those kinds of fines," says Ryan Scorgie, Kamloops Chamber of Commerce President.

Scorgie says he's disappointment chamber members weren't consulted on the topic, and he would like an opportunity to sit down and discuss the changes with the city. As well as tougher penalties, the chamber has concerns around safety considering there's the potential for RCMP to stop responding after a certain point. 

"There's been a notification of an alarm issue and there's no response, that's a risk management thing businesses are going to have to consider and how that's going to impact their businesses, that's what we do pay taxes for. I can understand the city's need to reduce the number of calls, but I'm not sure if this is the best way to deal with that situation," says Scorgie. 

Cenotaph clocks won't keep time by Remembrance Day