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Head of fire chiefs' group casts vote for ASAP

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

It’s the season of spin. But no matter how you slice it, the opening paragraph of last week’s commentary by Hank Clemmensen, president of the International Association of Fire Chiefs, isn’t a ringing endorsement of central stations.

“I always had supported remote station monitoring for my city’s fire alarms, both because I believed it would provide faster notification and because I believed central stations always take too long,” wrote Clemmensen, the fire chief in Inverness, Ill., on the website FireChief.com. “Phone calls between the central station operators and our PSAP take way too much time, and the conversations are vulnerable to errors.”

It’s tough to argue with that. The garbling of names and addresses has long been an issue for police and fire departments, and when is an emergency call ever fast enough? But it turns out that Clemmensen doesn’t have an ax to grind with the alarm community, as he quickly makes clear in hailing a top industry initiative: the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol.

“The interface allows a central station operator who has to notify a PSAP of an alarm to transmit all the information directly to that PSAP’s CAD screen with only a few keystrokes,” he said. “… Think about an operator from the Deep South talking to a PSAP call taker from New Jersey or Boston. Both are speaking English, but the languages are different. The interface transfers data without a telephone conversation—eliminating the chance of the PSAP call taker misunderstanding the central station alarm operator.”

Clemmensen goes on to praise the Central Station Alarm Association and the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System for laying the necessary groundwork to secure the ASAP system. The computerized message broker for ASAP is at the Nlets facility in Phoenix.

“A core group of alarm companies financed the development and implementation of this system, and they are committed to getting jurisdictions with large numbers of alarms connected to ASAP,” he said.

Clemmensen’s take on the protocol has to be music to the CSAA’s ears. It also serves as a rallying point for other fire chiefs nationwide.

“Are you willing to reduce your response times by at least 1.5 to 3 minutes with quicker alarm notification and fewer errors? It sounds like a no-brainer,” he said. “The majority of fire alarms are not true emergencies, and if this new interface gets us the needed information sooner, responses could be modified. … This could just be one more tool to help reduce line-of-duty deaths and make sure everyone goes home.”

ADT job growth linked to public funding incentives

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Security Systems News has written previously about plans that The ADT Corp has to add 150 new monitoring jobs at its Irving, Texas facility by the end of November.

But now that new independent company—which emerged from the recent breakup of Tyco International and began trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Oct. 1—also reportedly has plans to add 120 jobs at its headquarters in Boca Raton, Fla.

However, to create those Florida jobs, ADT is seeking as much as $1.62 million in state, county and local funding, according to the South Florida Business Journal.

Here’s some of what that publication had to say about the security giant, which it notes has revenues of more than $3 billion per year:
 

ADT Security Services received $1.24 million from the state in 2010 for creating 100 jobs as part of the construction of its Yamato Road headquarters. … On Tuesday, Palm Beach County commissioners will vote on whether to extend ADT an offer for $184,000 in job growth incentives. Boca Raton has pledged to give the company the same amount, while the state has offered ADT $1.25 million.
The money would be paid out over three years, should ADT create 120 jobs with annual salaries of $81,110, plus retain 260 current jobs. The company must also spend at least $400,000 retrofitting 175,000 square feet in its headquarters. … The regional economic model shown to the county states that ADT would have a $138 million economic impact over five years.

I’ve reached out to ADT to learn more about the jobs, the plan to redo its headquarters and why it’s asking for the public incentives. Stay posted!

 

Readers see reality of 'sunset' after AT&T sets 2G deadline

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10/16/2012

YARMOUTH, Maine—AT&T’s 2G “sunset” announcement in August didn’t surprise many people in the alarm industry: Only 9 percent had doubted it was imminent, according to a recent SSN News Poll. But despite that perspective, a majority of respondents said they had not yet begun upgrade their cellular equipment to 3G or 4G.

Illinois alarm companies urged to reclaim business

As a public fire district exits the fire alarm monitoring business per a judge’s order, IESA says there’s an opportunity to regain customers
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10/15/2012

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill.—Now that a federal judge has ordered the Lisle-Woodridge Fire District to get out of the fire alarm monitoring business, the state alarm association is encouraging private alarm contractors to once again seek customers there.

Changes to FIPS-201-2: How will they affect you?

The government is making progress and those in the know say eventually what’s going on in Washington will affect access control in the commercial market everywhere
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10/12/2012

YARMOUTH, Maine—Is it important for integrators who don’t do government work to pay attention to what’s going on with federal mandates for access control in government buildings? According to experts who spoke to Security Systems News for this story, the answer is yes.

Pro 1 plans to expand I-View to include hosted video

CEO Don Young sees service eventually migrating to residential space
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10/10/2012

ROMEOVILLE, Ill., and LAS VEGAS—Protection 1 officially introduced I-View Now, its new cloud-based video verification service, a few weeks ago at ASIS. But Pro 1’s Don Young is so convinced that it’s going to be a winner, he’s planning to expand the offer to include hosted video by the end of the year.

Samsung goes with FaceFirst

Samsung interested in making financial investments in technology partners
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10/10/2012

RIDGEFIELD PARK, N.J.—As part of its new strategic partner initiative, Samsung Techwin America is integrating megapixel cameras with facial recognition provider FaceFirst.

CAA symposium to feature four top industry execs

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10/10/2012

SAN FRANCISCO—Leaders from four security companies will speak at an executive symposium at the California Alarm Association’s 2012 Winter Convention, to be held here Dec. 5-8.

'Last big bite' in fight against false dispatches

SIAC director says alarm industry needs to step up and properly train customers
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10/10/2012

YARMOUTH, Maine—A conversation at the 2012 Electronic Security Expo in Nashville reminded Ron Walters just how far the alarm industry has to go on the home front to reduce false dispatches.

ADT CEO: It's not a 'moonshot' to double residential penetration to 40 percent

Naren Gursahaney says it will take effort, expanding interactive home offerings and educating the public and investors
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10/10/2012

NEW YORK—The ADT Corp. CEO Naren Gursahaney has set a bold goal. He wants the newly independent ADT—which began trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Oct. 1—to increase its residential penetration from 20 percent to as much as 40 percent.

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