713-467-6666 president@hgcaa.org




Our Sponsor in September 2018 for our Monthly Meeting



HGCAA Board of Directors

2017 – 2018

President
Vice
President

John C Helweg
713-467-6666
President@HGCAA.org

Van Mayorga|
281-932-2270
VicePres@HGCAA.org

Secretary
Treasurer

Mary Edmonson
713-799-3022
Secretary@HGCAA.org

Penny Mayorga
979-478-6432 x103
Treasurer@HGCAA.org

Sergant-at-Arms
Parliamentarian

Amanda Jackson
713-861-9418
SGT@HGCAA.org

Calvin Stewart
832-642-3702
PARL@HGCAA.org

Editor
Membership
Director

Steven Carr
713-553-6212
Editor@HGCAA.org

Dennis White
713-870-3702
Membership@HGCAA.org

Education
Director

Van Mayorga|
281-932-2270

Education@HGCAA.org

Past
President

Brian McKinney
713-9830182
PastPres@HGCAA.org

 

 


 

September 2018 Message from the HGCAA President – John Helweg

Our August meeting at Anixter West went well. I’d like to thank Willow and company for hosting us and providing great food. Please remember, our associate members support us, so please support them.

Our guest speaker was Tanner Lyman with Agemni. He showed us a small portion of what their backoffice products can do to help take care of tbeir business. If you’re not coming to the meetings, you’re missing out on CEU’s, great speakers and lots of inside information.

Our upcoming meeting & election is September 13th at Anixter North. I encourage anyone interested in participating on the Board to please contact Brian McKinney prior to the meeting. I don’t anticipate a long election, so we should have plenty of time for our guest speaker.

Our guest speaker is Mark Popkowski with Modern System Concepts, Inc. He’ll speak about an application he developed four years ago that deals with inspections and used it with his company successfully. He decided it was worth investing and made it scalable and available for the industry. SDM is releasing an article about it in their September issue. His software company is PnewSoft and the software he came up with is called fireNspec. It is a mobile platform that allows you to do a variety of inspections, allowing each company to customize the information they need out in the field. Furthermore, you can manage and participate with the inspections being performed in the field in real time. The technicians are held accountable as everything is date and time stamped. FireNspec currently integrates with SedonaOffice and is being used by some of SDM’s top 100 integrators.

Feel free to go to fireNspec.com and register for a (14) fourteen day free trial.

 

See y’all soon,

John C. Helweg

President/HGCAA



Secretary Report on July Meeting

Treasurers Report


Alarm Industry Related Articles

Convergint Technologies Acquires Canada-Based Security Integrator

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HOW TO PROVIDE TAX FREE HEALTH INSURANCE WITHOUT ACTUALLY PROVIDING HEALTH INSURANCE

Many Security and Integration company owners are setting up a Qualified Small Business Health Reimbursement Agreement (QSEHRA) plan.  The plans, created in December 2016 as part of the 21st Century Cures Act, allow small employers to set aside a fixed amount of money each month that employees can use to purchase individual health insurance or use on medical expenses, tax-free. This means employers get to offer benefits in a tax-efficient manner without the hassle or headache of administering a traditional group plan and employees can choose the plan they want.   Most security and integration owners don’t have the resources to provide a traditional health insurance plan.  As a result, their employees are forced to secure their own health insurance and their middle class employees are not eligible for much, if not all, of the credits available through the Affordable Care Act.  A QSEHRA can be an excellent way to provide your employees with tax free funds to purchase their own health care.

The IRS outlines the rules for QSEHRA (which stands for Qualfied Small Employer Health Reimbursement Arrangement) and most small businesses are eligible to participate. Here is a simplified summary of QSEHRA eligibility:

  • The employer must have fewer than 50 full-time employees.
  • The employer cannot offer a group health plan to any of its employees. If a group health plan is provided, the employer will have to cancel it before the QSEHRA can start.
  • Employees must have a health insurance plan that meets minimum essential coverage in order to participate — short-term plans, indemnity and faith-based sharing plans do not qualify as MEC. Also, QSEHRA is designed to work with tax credits employees may have received from the marketplace to purchase their insurance. Any tax credits the employee receives on their premiums will be reduced dollar for dollar by the QSEHRA.

There are no minimum contribution limits. The IRS sets the maximum contribution limits each year for QSEHRA. For 2018 the maximum contribution limits are $420 per month per single person or $854 per month per family. QSEHRA is funded solely by the employer and the employee cannot contribute to the fund. The reimbursement amounts must be offered fairly to all employees- the rates can vary by family size, or all employees can be offered the same rate. Part-time, seasonal employees under 26 years, and employees on a spouse’s group plan can be excluded from the QSEHRA.
Employers can choose to reimburse premiums only or premiums and  medical expenses.

Owners can even be included in a QSEHRA if the owner is considered an employee of the business. So, if you take a salary from your business you may be eligible.

You can even administer your own QSEHRA, it may be difficult for a small business to keep up with the changing regulations as they occur. Since its inception, the IRS has issued two major guidance changes and has promised more in the future. Many owners do not have the time or resources to research and stay current on law changes insuring they are compliant.

In addition, the IRS requires small businesses to keep records up to seven years. That means the owner would need a secure way to keep employee medical receipts and their personal health information secure and safe for up to seven years.

And lastly, another important item for employers to consider is employee privacy. For reimbursements to be tax-free, you have to substantiate that employees are using it to pay for health insurance and medical expenses. Information about employees’ medical expenses (including individual insurance premiums) is considered Protected Health Information (PHI) under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). As an employer, asking for employee medical records is a HIPAA privacy violation. Plus, it can get awkward for employees to disclose personal medical information to their boss.

A QSERA can be an easy way to provide health insurance to your employees, while allowing you to give employees with different  needs plenty of flexibility.  Talk to your tax advisor about the benefits of these plans.  If you still have questions, please give us a call.

Mitch Reitman is the Managing Principal of Reitman Consulting Group, Inc. and a member of the Electronic Security Hall of Fame.  He can be reached at 817-698-9999 or at Mitch@Reitman.US


September 2018 TBFAA UPDATE – PRESIDENT KELLY RYAN

From Kelly….. Originally from Mark Matlock at UCC

Hey Guys,

I wanted to share this article with you guys because Rodney Hooker was the inspiration for me writing the article and the article is basically an ode to Rodney without coming out and saying it.  I hope you enjoy it and see his fingerprints in it.

https://www.securitysales.com/columns/unfair-fines-alarm-monitoring-policies/

Mark Matlock
Senior Vice President

Make your plans today for TBFAA 2018! Information and registration is at http://www.tbfaa.org.

Sincerely,

Kelly Ryan



 

 


 


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.

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

PLEASE THANK OUR ASSOCIATE MEMBERS
FOR PROVIDING FOOD AND HOSTING OUR MEETINGS
BY PURCHASING THEIR PRODUCTS




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.


 

PLEASE SUPPORT OUR ASSOCIATE MEMBERS

HOUSTON GULF COAST ALARM ASSOCIATION
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.


NEWSLETTER ADVERTISING

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