Vivint SmartHome is TMA 2017 Monitoring Center of the Year

Dynamark, Safe, and CRC Honored with Personnel Awards

TMA is pleased to announce the winners of the 2017 Monitoring Center Excellence Awards:

  • Monitoring Center of the Year: Vivint SmartHome
  • Monitoring Center Operator of the Year: Craig Pierce, Safe Systems
  • Monitoring Center Manager of the Year: Keith Godsey, Dynamark
  • Monitoring Center Support Person of the Year: Laura Jacobson, Cooperative Response Center

“The companies and individuals chosen as winners this year are shining examples of how seriously the monitoring industry takes its responsibility to protect life and property,” said Elizabeth Lasko, Vice President of Communications, TMA.

“Our monitoring team delivers a world-class security experience, in conjunction with our state-of-the-art smart home solutions that delight our customers every day,” said Steve Dixon, senior vice president of customer experience and operations at Vivint Smart Home, in a press release. “We’re thrilled to be recognized by the profession’s leading trade association, TMA, for the work we do to keep our customers’ homes and families safe and secure.”

“We congratulate our winners for being recognized as the best of the best,” Lasko continued. “Our judges related how very difficult it was to choose the finalists, let alone the winners, from all the nominations. The applications that were submitted all told powerful stories of service, innovation, corporate culture, and the desire to constantly improve.”

“Each nominee must submit an extensive application detailing company systems like disaster recovery plan, education and training programs, technical innovations, and even community outreach,” said Lasko. “In the case of individual nominations, we ask for examples of how these employees go above and beyond their job descriptions to pursue excellence.”

The TMA Monitoring Center Excellence Awards recognize any FM Approvals, Intertek/ETL or UL-listed monitoring center (TMA members and non-members) and outstanding personnel who perform in the highest professional manner, thereby making a significant contribution to the betterment of the alarm industry and the alarm profession while demonstrating exceptional service to their customers and community.

The purpose of the awards program is to:

  • Establish and promote the inherent value of professional monitoring services in general.
  • Honor those who have made the most significant contributions to the service.
  • Promote the distinct level of professionalism attained by NRTL-approved monitoring centers.

The TMA Monitoring Center Excellence Awards Program is sponsored by SDM Magazine, which will publish a feature story detailing the accomplishments of the winners later this summer. Entries are judged by a blue-ribbon volunteer judging panel appointed by TMA. The four winners were announced at the Opening Reception of the 2017 Electronic Security Expo (ESX) on Tuesday, June 13. For past winners and more information, visit www.tma.us.

TMA-Excellence-Awards-2017

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Marc Mineau  (1954-2017)

Marc MineauTMA is saddened to learn of the passing in May of our friend Marc Mineau, a passionate entrepreneur who worked for many years in the security field in Canada and the United States. He served as a board member of TMA (then CSAA), national president of CANASA, and president of SIA, and was the intellectual architect of ALAS (Latin America Security Association).

“We have all lost a great friend, champion and defender for our industry,” said TMA past president Ralph Sevinor. “Very few have done so much as Marc had done. I was fortunate to have had Marc as a true friend and also worked with him while he was president of SIA and I was president of CSAA [now TMA]. In our collaboration of mutual associations was the seed capital for our online education programs. We were all recipients of his passion, tenacity and wit.”

Ivan Spector, TMA First Vice President, recounted that “Marc Mineau had a long and distinguished career in the Security Industry. He started Omnitron in Montreal, a full service alarm and monitoring company which he eventually sold to Videotron, a Montreal-based cable company. This became Protectron, a National Company that had a coast-to-coast reach. Marc then turned his considerable talents to the card access part of our Industry by launching Kantech, which was acquired by Tyco and which remains a part of their product line used by many in the Industry today.”

“But most important,” Spector continued, “Marc was my friend, mentor and an industry leader. His joie de vivre was infectious, and spending time with Marc was always stimulating. Amongst the many things he taught me was the importance of giving back to the industry. Marc will be sorely missed.”

Mineau, who suffered with Alzheimers for a long time before passing away, leaves a great legacy and many friends. Donations in his memory are welcomed by the South Shore Alzheimer’s Society (Canada).

–June 8, 2017

FCC Adopts NPRM, NOI, and Request for Comment on Copper Retirement, Section 214 Discontinuance and State Law Preemption

The FCC has released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), Notice of Inquiry (NOI), and Request for Comment outlining proposed changes to current rules regarding copper retirement and the discontinuance of telecommunications service and seeking comment on the preemption of state laws governing the maintenance or retirement of copper facilities “to accelerate the deployment of next-generation networks and services by removing barriers to infrastructure investment.”

The FCC’s NOI addresses state laws inhibiting broadband deployment.  Comments on the NOI are due June 12 and reply comments are due July 10. 

In the NOI, the FCC seeks comment on  adopting rules that would help decrease State-sponsored impediments to broadband deployment. Most importantly for the alarm  industry, the FCC seeks comment on “whether there are state laws governing the maintenance or retirement of copper facilities that serve as a barrier to deploying next-generation technologies and services that the Commission might seek to preempt.”  As examples of rules that may be barriers to deploying next-generation technologies the FCC states that “certain states require utilities or specific carriers to maintain adequate equipment and facilities” and others “empower public utilities commissions, either acting on their own authority or in response to a complaint,  to require utilities or specific carriers to maintain, repair, or improve facilities or equipment or to have in place a written preventative maintenance program.”  The  FCC seeks comment on:

  • The impact of state legacy service quality and copper facilities maintenance regulations.
  • The impact of state laws restricting the retirement of copper facilities.
  • Whether Section 253 of the Act provides the FCC with authority to preempt state laws and regulations governing service quality, facilities maintenance, or copper retirement that are impeding fiber deployment, including whether such laws have the effect of prohibiting the ability of incumbent LECs to provide any interstate or intrastate telecommunications service and whether such laws are not competitively neutral or not necessary to preserve and advance universal service, protect the public safety and welfare, ensure the continued quality of telecommunications services, and safeguard the rights of consumers.

The FCC also asks for comment on:

  • Eliminating excessive delays in negotiations and approvals for rights-of-way agreements and permitting for telecommunications services.
  • Prohibiting excessive fees and other costs that may have the effect of prohibiting the provision of telecommunications service.
  • Prohibiting unreasonable conditions or requirements in the context of granting access to rights-of-way, permitting, construction, or licensure related to the provision of telecommunications services.

In the NPRM, the FCC seeks comment on proposed changes to the copper retirement and  Section 214 rules to discontinue services.  The comment dates for the issues raised in the NPRM have not been established.

The FCC proposes a number of revisions to the Part 51 network change disclosure rules and the rules applicable to copper retirement.  Under one proposal, the FCC would repeal Section 51.332 of the rules and return to the prior short-term network change notification rules for copper retirement.  Under this proposal,  an incumbent LEC would be allowed to retire copper facilities 90 days after FCC issuance of a public notice and without providing direct notice to retail customers.

Under a second proposal, the FCC would eliminate all differences between copper retirement and other network change notice requirements, rendering copper retirement changes subject to the same long-term or, where applicable, short-term network change notice requirements as all other types of network changes subject to Section 251(c)(5).  Under this proposal, an incumbent LEC would be allowed to retire copper facilities 10 days after FCC issuance of a public notice and without providing direct notice to retail customers.

Under a third proposal, the FCC would “retain but amend Section 51.332 to streamline the process, provide greater flexibility, and reduce burdensome requirements for incumbent LEC copper retirements.”  Among other things, the FCC seeks comment on whether the rule should be changed to require an incumbent LEC to serve notice only to telephone exchange service providers that directly interconnect with the incumbent LEC’s network and not retail customers and reduce the waiting period to 90 days from 180 days after the FCC releases its public notice before the planned copper retirement can be implemented.

Similarly, the NPRM proposes a number of measures to shorten timeframes and eliminate protections when an incumbent LEC seeks to discontinue the provision of a telecommunications service pursuant to Section 214 of the Act.  Specifically, the FCC seeks comment on:

  • Reducing the Section 214(a) discontinuance process for applications that seek authorization to stop accepting new customers for the service while maintaining service to existing customers (a.k.a. “grandfathering”) to 10 days.
  • Changing the list of eligible services for grandfathering.
  • Adopting a streamlined uniform comment period of 10 days and an auto-grant period of 31 days for both dominant and non-dominant carriers for discontinuance of services that have been grandfathered for at least 180 days.
  • Whether the FCC should conclude that Section 214(a) discontinuances will not adversely affect the present or future public conveniences and necessity, provided that fiber, IP-based, or wireless services are available to the affected community and what types of fiber, IP-based or wireless services would constitute acceptable alternatives.

Read more and submit comments.