We do not "take virtually anybody...to swell the ranks" (as Pete Peterson said). Our voluntary organization's members now number about one hundred. In the eight years that I have been a part of this association, membership has grown by only five or six members a year. We definitely are not swelling the ranks. We do not accept every applicant, nor do we grant continuous membership unless a person maintains certain standards. We have a written code of ethics, which includes a section that states: "We will strive to strengthen the membership of the PPIAC by selecting and approving for membership only those individuals qualified personally and professionally, and whose business operations are conducted in an honest and legitimate manner."

An investigator is not admitted until after a background check is conducted on him or her. This includes checking references, former employers and criminal records. Education and membership in other professional organizations are also verified. Even when accepted, a person is only granted associate member status until they have had at least three years of investigative experience.

It is true that several PPIAC members did testify against the last PI licensing bill. This was because the bill included a section that would allow PIs to carry a concealed weapon, a notion that most in the PPIAC oppose. Actually, we're proponents of the licensing of private investigators. In that survey last fall, 72 percent of the respondents were in favor of licensing. We have established a licensing committee that is in the process of gathering appropriate information for the drafting of such a bill, which we feel will be to the benefit of the Colorado public.

When any convicted felon, upon release from prison, can have business cards printed declaring that person to be a private investigator, you can realize the need for a good PI licensing law.

Stan Miller

For Pete's sake! Calhoun spends a whole article maligning R.W. "Pete" Peterson's character and credibility, then prints unsubstantiated information with Peterson as her only source. I never hired Peterson to do anything for me or my campaign. Her column is usually better than that.

Craig Silverman

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