Legislation Would Provide Relief for Fixed-Income Seniors, Disabled Veterans, and the Unemployed
Mineola – Nassau County Legislator Siela Bynoe (LD2) today introduced legislation to grant exemptions on residential-alarm fees and penalties for residents facing financial hardship – including seniors on fixed incomes, disabled veterans, and those receiving public assistance and unemployment benefits.
“We all deserve to feel safe and secure in our own homes, but the cost for this basic right is just too high for too many of our most vulnerable residents,” said Legis. Bynoe.
The County currently charges $100 for permits to install residential alarm systems that notify the police when triggered. The County additionally requires a $100 permit-renewal fee every three years. Legis. Bynoe’s legislation exempt the County’s more needy residents from these fees.
To qualify for the exemption, applicants would need to present documentation from the relevant public agency, such as a Notice of Award Letter for Disability Benefits from the Social Security Administration, or a tax bill reflecting the grant of an Enhanced Star Exemption for limited-income seniors.
Qualified residents would also receive limited relief from “false-alarm” penalties. To discourage false alarms, the County fines residential permit-holders who have more than two false alarms in a calendar year . Legis. Bynoe’s bill would waive the penalty for the third and fourth false alarms as well. Penalties for additional false alarms would begin at $100 and increase according to a graduated penalty schedule. This would reduce the financial hardship for the needy, while keeping the financial incentive to prevent false alarms.