The Spring Issue of the TMA Dispatch is Now Available!

Don’t miss the spring issue of the TMA Dispatch, which is available for download here:

This issue’s cover story explores TMA education and how members approach and value education for their employees.

Our legal column confronts employer issues relevant to employees returning to the workplace. Read up to be certain that you continue to protect employees’ health, as well as your business.

We tackle FirstNet in our Technology column and the Research column takes an up close and personal look at the future of home health care.

Be sure to check out the preview of our upcoming Mid-Year Meeting, too!

These and more!

Read it now!

Minnesota ECC is 82nd ASAP-to-PSAP

The Anoka County MN Emergency Communications Center (ECC) the 82nd ECC in the United States and 2nd ECC in the state of Minnesota to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Anoka County went live with Vivint, Vector Security, Rapid Response Monitoring, Tyco (Johnson Controls), and Quick Response initially on Wednesday, March 3rd followed by Security Central, Guardian Protection, Stanley Security, Affiliated Monitoring, Brinks Home Security, Securitas, National Monitoring Center, Protection One, AT&T Digital Life and ADT on Thursday, March 4th.

“ASAP will definitely take some of the call load off of our dispatchers, which keeps them more available for emergency calls”, said Kari Morrissey, Communications Coordinator with the Anoka County Emergency Communications Center. “We are excited to be a part of this program. It’s a win-win for all involved. Our public safety partners will receive their calls quicker, which ultimately means a faster response to alarms from initial trip time. This benefits the citizens and businesses to which we provide service.”

Learn more about ASAP-to-PSAP service.

NJELSA Challenging New State Law

The New Jersey Electronic Life Safety Association (NJELSA) is legally challenging a new NJ law that prohibits licensed alarm dealers from working in any facility receiving public funds unless they were participating in an approved apprenticeship program with an ERISA certified pension trust fund. This bill effectively forces all alarm dealers to either stop doing business with clients they may have serviced for decades or pay the unions to participate in their plan.

Unfortunately, some of NJELSA’s members have already been denied renewal of their public works permits, others have capitulated by paying thousands of dollars to unions to retain the right to do business with their customers.

TMA members who do business in New Jersey either directly installing systems in publicly funded facilities or monitoring these accounts for their customers may want to get the details and learn how to best protect their business in the state.


TMA Welcomes it 81st ECC to its ASAP-to-PSAP Service

The Cumberland County PA Department of Public Safety is the 81st Emergency Communications Center (ECC) in the United States and 5th ECC in the state of Pennsylvania to implement the Automated Secure Alarm Protocol (ASAP). Cumberland County went live with Vector Security and Rapid Response Monitoring initially on Wednesday, January 27th followed by Stanley Security, Quick Response, Securitas, Affiliated Monitoring, Guardian Protection, AT&T Digital Life, National Monitoring Center, Protection One, Brinks Home Security, Vivint, Tyco (Johnson Controls), and ADT.

“With the installation of ASAP into our system, we can improve 9-1-1 response time for Cumberland County residents or business owners who have alarm systems.” said Robert Shively Jr., Public Safety Director. “Currently alarm companies call using our non-emergency numbers to report a burglar, fire or medical alarm requiring our dispatch to receive and manually enter all the information. “With ASAP, we will get the alarm notification electronically which will automatically populate the data into the Computer Aided Dispatch system.”

TMA Welcomes New Team Member

The Monitoring Association [TMA] is pleased to announce the addition of Ms. Tara R. Compher to its headquarters’ staff. In her new role as TMA’s Programs and Administrative Coordinator, Ms. Compher will oversee TMA’s Five Diamond, IQ, and FirstNet programs, in addition to assisting with CRM data management and other projects and serving as the staff liaison to TMA’s NextGen group.

“Tara brings a broad range of valuable business and administrative experience to TMA,” stated TMA Executive Director Celia T. Besore. “In her previous roles, Tara demonstrated an outstanding commitment to quality and to customer service, which make her ideally suited to this pivotal, customer-focused position within our organization.”
“I am excited for this new chapter in my life, but more importantly, I am looking forward to helping The Monitoring Association achieve their mission of creating a safer world for everyone,” said Ms. Compher.

Prior to accepting her new position within TMA, Ms. Compher worked for the U.S. Courts as a probation clerk and as a front office coordinator in a dental practice.

Ms. Compher can be reaching by email at

Important Message for Washington, DC Service Providers

Area Code Overlay Approved for the Washington, DC 202 Area Code

Attention: Alarm and Security Service/Equipment Providers

To ensure a continuing supply of telephone numbers, the Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia approved the addition of the new 771 area code to the geographic region served by the 202 area code.  This process is known as an area code overlay.

What is an area code overlay?

An overlay is the addition of another area code (771) to the same geographic region as an existing area code (202). An overlay does not require customers to change their existing area code or telephone number but does require using a new dialing procedure to complete calls.

What will be the new dialing procedure?

The new dialing procedure will require that all calls in the 202 area code that are currently dialed with seven digits will need to be dialed using area code + telephone number.  The same dialing procedure will apply to telephone numbers that are assigned with the new 771 area code.

How does this affect providers of alarm and security services and equipment?

As a result of the overlay, a new local dialing procedure requires callers to dial area code + telephone number. 

Alarm and security services and equipment currently located in the 202 area code and programmed to dial only seven digits must be updated or reprogrammed to dial area code + telephone number for all calls in the 202/771 area code.

Reprogramming of alarm equipment should be completed by October 9, 2021.

To verify that equipment can complete calls to the new 771 area code, a special test number, 771-990-TEST (8378), will be in service beginning August 9, 2021 and it will remain active through December 9, 2021.

When will the change begin?

Effective April 10, 2021, if you have a 202 area code, you should begin dialing the area code + telephone number whenever you place a call.  If you forget and dial just seven digits, your call will still be completed.

Beginning October 9, 2021, if you have a 202 area code, you must dial the area code + telephone number on all calls, including calls within the same area code.  On and after this date, if you do not dial the area code + telephone number, your calls will not complete and a recording will instruct you to hang up and dial again, including the area code.

Beginning November 9, 2021, new telephone lines or services may be assigned numbers using the new 771 area code.

What will remain the same?

  • Telephone number, including current area code, will not change.
  • The price of a call, coverage area, or other rates and services will not change due to the overlay.
  • What is a local call now will remain a local call regardless of the number of digits dialed.
  • Emergency services can still dial just three digits to reach 911.
  • If 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 or 811 are currently available in your community, these calls may still be dialed using just the three digits.

Who may you contact with questions?

Customers with questions regarding the dialing procedure change should be directed to their local service provider, or they can contact the Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia at



Co-Chairs for the DC 202/771 Area Code Industry Team

Laura Dalton,

Karen Riepenkroger,

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – New Dialing Code

Please read the announcement regarding changes needed to be made by intrusion and fire services companies in preparation for the nationwide implementation of 988 as the 3-digit abbreviated dialing code for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

It is imperative that alarm companies reprogram alarm panels in customers’ premises if they currently are programed to dial out seven digits to reach the alarm monitoring bureau.  If they are dialing out seven digits now, they must be re-programed to dial out a ten-digit number which includes the area code plus telephone number.  Such updates or reprogramming must occur between April 24, 2021 and October 24, 2021 (the permissive dialing period).  Starting these efforts before April 24, 2021 may result in failed calls if permissive 10-digit dialing has not yet been implemented.  The changes need to be completed by October 24, 2021.

No change is needed if the alarm panels are currently dialing out ten-digits, or if they are dialing out a toll free number (800, 888, 844, etc.) to reach the alarm monitoring bureau.

Additional information about this transition on the NANPA website at


Explore New Business Opportunities in TMA’s Winter Dispatch

The Winter issue of the TMA Dispatch is now available!

In this Issue:
  • Cover Story Discover new business opportunities in both residential and commercial markets.
  • Event News – Catch a wrap-up of TMA’s fall events and see what’s ahead in 2021.
  • Technology – Dreading data migration? Get expert advice that will put your company on track for success (And, keep you sane!).
  • Law – Make sure you understand the laws associated with door-to-door sales, as COVID-19 continues to rage.
  • Research – With extended time at home, residential customers are clamoring for more home automation. Learn more about the latest trends.
  • And, much more!

View this issue online or download it from our website.


12/17 Virtual Town Hall – AT&T 3G Sunset: Appeal for Extension

As many of you know, AT&T and Verizon have announced sunsets for their 3G networks. AT&T is calling for a sunset date of February 22, 2022 and Verizon is calling for a sunset of December of 2022 – 10 months later.

Join us for this special TMA Virtual Town Hall to learn what you can do to prevent 6,000,000 alarm industry radios becoming dysfunctional.

Due to the impact of COVID-19, the industry is seeking a longer transition period before AT&T sunsets its 3G network. For that reason, we are asking elected officials to reach out to AT&T and urge them to push back their sunset to December 2022 which would make AT&T’s sunset the same time as Verizon’s proposed sunset, citing the pandemic as the reason.

Because of the Coronavirus many of our members’ customers have been reluctant to have alarm technicians enter their homes and businesses to upgrade their equipment to it compatible with newer networks.

Register to attend this special Virtual Town Hall to learn more about this issue, its potential impact on your business and its customers, and how you can best support this appeal.

Our Speakers
  • Bill Springer, The Carmen Group (AICC Lobbyist)
  • Lou Fiore, Chair, AICC


TMA President Appoints New Committee Chairs

The Associate Members’ Liaison Committee and the Proprietary Council both welcomed new chairs in October.

Jennifer Holloway, CIBC Bank USA, is joining DMP Vice President of Marketing Mark Hillenburg, as co-chair of the Associate Members’ Liaison Committee, which represents suppliers and Associate Members to the TMA Board of Directors. “As a long-time member of the Associate Members’ Liaison Committee I look forward to partnering with Mark Hillenburg to represent my fellow associate members’ needs and concerns on the TMA Board and with general membership,” Holloway stated. “Every member plays a role in reaching TMA’s goals, and I am grateful to have this new opportunity as co-chair.”

With the resignation of TMA’s longtime Proprietary Council Chair Dan Jackman, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, President Don Young appointed Michele Levcik, Wegmans Food Markets, Inc., to the position of Council chairman. “I am very excited and honored for the opportunity to serve on the TMA board. My goals are to increase proprietary participation and retention and continue to build relationships and knowledge in the industry,” commented Levcik.

Richard Flores, Puget Sound Energy, will support Levcik on the Proprietary Council as her new vice-chair. Flores has served as the Council’s Secretary since 2017.