2018 HGCAA January Newsletter

Houston Gulf Coast Alarm Association

January 2018 Newsletter



HGCAA Board of Directors

2017 – 2018


John C Helweg

Van Mayorga|


Mary Edmonson

Penny Mayorga
979-478-6432 x103


Amanda Jackson

Calvin Stewart


Steven Carr

Dennis White


Van Mayorga|



Brian McKinney



January 2018 Message from the HGCAA President – John Helweg

We had a good December meeting. I’d like to thank Amanda Jackson at ADI on Pinemont for hosting us. Please remember, our associate members support us, so please support them.

We had a decent showing of members, although our attendance has been down some compared to last years meetings. We also had the TBFAA Board present.

Please make the plan to come to our monthly meetings. We go to a lot of effort to bring you great speakers and relevant industry information from many sources. 

We discussed some upcoming NFPA rule changes and what that means to, City of Houston proposed amendments to the alarm ordinance and Expand business expensing under Section 179 of the tax code in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. 

Our guests speaker Joy Al-Jazrawi, an Immigration Attorney with Nguyen, Jazrawi & Chen did a great job in a freestyle discussion about cases she’s worked, what to do and not do in certain circumstances and much more. It was very educational and eye opening to see what issues non-US citizens face.
Thanks to Debi, Brian, Van & Penny (sorry if I missed anyone) for representing HGCAA at the ASSIST / HGCAA Christmas Party. The food was good and a good amount of money was raised for their Fallen Officer Fund.
Our next meeting is January 11th at Electronic Custom Distributors. Please don’t forget to RSVP.
For our guest speaker: I’m working on having a couple alarm equipment manufacturers reps come share with us their current & future products so we know what’s available to us. 
See y’all soon.
John C. Helweg

Email from the Texas Regulatory Service Division
to address Managers Training

Online Scheduling of Manager Examination Begins 1/4/18

As part of the continuing enhancements to TOPS, applicants for manager registrations may now schedule their manager examination.  DPS will no longer automatically enroll applicants into a manager examination.

The available examination dates and locations may be reviewed by selecting the “Schedule Exam” button within the online manager application. Navigate to the “My Applications” tab and select “View Checklist” for the manager application.  The checklist will have two green buttons at the tops of the page:  one to schedule the examination and one to upload documents.

Once the scheduling process is complete, a confirmation page will display showing the examination location, date and time; a confirmation email will be sent; and  the scheduled examination will be displayed at the top of the application checklist.  An applicant may only be scheduled for one examination at a time.

A “Reschedule” button will appear next to the display of the currently scheduled examination.  Selection of this button will reinitiate the scheduling process. 

A user guide showing the pages and scheduling process will be posted on the Private Security website under the Application Instructions: http://www.dps.texas.gov/rsd/psb/ApplInstr.htm

RenEarl Bowie, Division Director, Regulatory Services Division, 512-424-7731 

TBFAA REPORT January 2018 – Kelly Ryan, President

Happy New Year!  It’s time to “turn the page” on 2017 and welcome the new opportunities that will come our way in 2018.  While January is often used to review organizational goals, I like to use this time of year to remind our members that it is also a great time to review the basics and make sure that we are all up-to-date and current with our regulatory agencies.

Do you have a current check list for DPS audits?  The DPS has been using the term “yearly audit” for quite some time, and it is apparent that they are pushing hard to contact every licensed company at least once a year for a review.  The information available to you from your local association as well as the TBFAA is there to help you stay current.  Be sure to mark your calendar for every 2018 association meeting and make it a goal to attend the meetings.

Are you receiving the weekly newsletter from TBFAA?  If not, you are missing out on a lot of great information that is directly related to the security and fire alarm industries in Texas!  You can subscribe to the newsletter through the TBFAA website, or email me at president@tbfaa.org and I will add you to the subscriber list.  It is also a great time to renew your TBFAA membership!

Have you ever attended a DPS PSB meeting in Austin?  They meet quarterly, and the experience is worth the trip!  In 2017 I received multiple calls from individuals that were seeking advice on PSB administrative hearings.  Almost every one that I spoke with had never previously attended a PSB meeting, so they didn’t have the first-hand knowledge of how the meetings worked.  The next PSB meeting is January 24th in Austin.  Information on the meeting can be found on the DPS Regulatory Services website, or contact me for details.

I would also like to encourage everyone to look into the False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA).  If you have contact with ordinance officials, please encourage them to join FARA as there is a lot of great information designed specifically for first responders and alarm ordinance enforcement professionals.  More information on FARA is available at www.faraonline.org.

A special thanks goes to all the 2017 TBFAA members, board of directors, and local association members!  As we start 2018, I want to wish everyone a year of prosperity and good health, and I look forward to seeing everyone throughout the year!

Kelly Ryan

DPS PRIVATE SECURITY UPDATE – Letter concerning Sunset Review Survey

January 3, 2018

Dear Recipient,

This email serves as a reminder about the survey we sent you earlier requesting your feedback on the Department of Public Safety (DPS).  If you have already completed the survey, please disregard this email.  We sincerely appreciate your time and effort to respond.

If you have not yet completed the survey, we would greatly appreciate your response by January 10, 2018.

As we noted earlier, the Texas Legislature, through the Texas Sunset Act, has charged the Sunset Advisory Commission with reviewing the mission and performance of DPS.  Based on the recommendations of the Sunset Commission, the Texas Legislature ultimately decides whether an agency continues to operate into the future and if so, whether any reforms are needed.

As part of our review, we are seeking the input of organizations and individuals who have an interest in public safety services, as carried out by DPS. Sunset staff will issue a report on DPS in April 2018, which will contain findings and recommendations for the Sunset Commission, and ultimately the Legislature, to consider.  To help ensure the free flow of information, comments submitted to Sunset staff before publication of the staff report, including through the survey linked below, are confidentialand will not be shared with the Department of Public Safety.


If you need more information or have questions about our process, please contact Amy Trost at (512) 463‐1300.  You can find additional information about the Sunset Commission on our website at www.sunset.texas.gov.  We greatly appreciate your assistance and look forward to hearing your ideas.


Ken Levine

Director – Sunset Advisory Commission

This email is the property of the Sunset Advisory Commission and may contain material that is confidential and/or exempt from disclosure under state law. If you have received this message in error, please notify us by replying to the message, then deleting it.

 Alarm Industry News

Vivint to Pay ADT $10 Million to Settle Deceptive Sales Lawsuit


Calendar Of Events for 2018

HGCAA meetings are held the second Thursday of each month from 11:30-1pm.

See below for the locations.  Dates and locations may change as needed.

January 2018
1/11 – HGCAA meeting @ Electronic Custom Distributors

February 2018
2/8 – HGCAA meeting @ Tri-Ed North

March 2018
3/8 – HGCAA meeting @ Automated Outlet

April 2018
4/12 – HGCAA meeting @ Bass Computers

May 2018
5/4 – Bass Computers – Expo & Crawfish boil

5/10 – HGCAA meeting @ Tri-Ed North

June 2018
6/14 – HGCAA meeting @ ADI Pinemont

July 2018
7/12 – HGCAA meeting @ Electronic Custom Distributors

August 2018
8/9 – HGCAA meeting @ Automated Outlet

September 2018
9/13 – HGCAA meeting & elections @ Tri-Ed North


Automated Outlet Houston has moved to:
6300 Westpark Dr., Suite 100
Houston, Texas 77057
Thank you for being a loyal Customer!

Houston Alarm Detail

Check with the City of Houston to make sure your company is listed on their alarm permit web site.

They have a  specific form you need to fill out and submit to them for inclusion.

You also need to be sending municipalities notice of alarm system activation.

Please make sure your customers are using the most current alarm permit form.

Harris County Alarm Detail

 Please make sure your customers are using the most current alarm permit form.

Ft Bend County Alarm Detail

 Be sure your customers are securing an alarm permit from Fort Bend County upon activation. Their alarm permit can be found here.

Montgomery County Alarm Detail

Check with the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office to make sure your company is listed on their alarm permit web site.

Please make sure your customers are using the most current alarm permit form.

Alarm ordinance – Montgomery County are actively ticketing homeowners that don’t have alarm permits.


PO Box 19484
Houston, TX  77224-9484

Comments, questions, change of address or material for inclusion in this publication should be directed to the Editor. Other associations wishing to use material from the “Communicator” are welcome to do so as long as proper credit is given to the author and publication.


We are renewing ad spaces for 2017-2018.

The ad spots are $300/yr. The ads will move around as content dictates.

Ads are 5” wide x 7” tall and may be updated monthly.

The revenue generated by our Newsletter helps support our Association, Scholarships and our Industry.

Contact us for additional information – John C. Helweg  713-467-6666