Meeting Minutes >> April 2006 Minutes
April 2006 Minutes

April 21, 2006 2:00pm

 

Board Members Present:

Ruth Reynolds

Ted Gartman

Jim Mabry

Jeff Kiker

Leanne Bright Cloudman

 

Board Members not Present

Robert (Monty) Clark

Larry Flannery

Thalia Ellis

 

 

Welcome and Call to Order

President Ruth Reynolds called the meeting to order at 2:15pm

 

Welcome

 

Announcements

 

 

Members In Attendance

 

Jim Davis – Sandhills – Southern Pines

Rick Clayton - Allied Legal Services - 

Audra Coleman - Cameo Investigations - High Point

Bill Dover – Kiker Investigations - Salisbury

Tom Rose – Kiker Investigations - Salisbury

Mike Sansom - Sansom Investigations

EJ Tomson – AA - Wilmington

Steve Siske – Atlantic Southeast -        

Rick Eatmon - Eatmon and Associates - Wilson

 

 

Due to the guest speaker’s tight schedule, he spoke to the group first.

 

 

 

 

 

Guest Speaker – Charles McDarris

 

Attorney McDarris was asked to come and speak in order to address situations that keep causing PIs to be brought before the Grievance Committee due to complaints

Introduction of speaker by President Ruth Reynolds

 

The bulk of complaints have been contributed to lack of communication between PIs and Clients.  Most of the complaints PPS receives involves situations where an investigator won’t respond to phone calls, letters, fails to supply client with documents requested i.e. reports, documentation etc.

Complaints are filed often by Competitors – due to loss of a contract

 

“It use to be when you called the board, you would cause problems for yourself.  It is no longer that way.”  McDarris stressed that if you have questions you should call the board.

He suggested that he would rather take five minutes with a licensee on the phone instead of having to work through a grievance with the licensee after a complaint has been filed.

 

Rick Clayton – If we are contacted by a client – but the client has not paid or has refused to pay what is the rule about our being able to withhold information until they pay


Current language does not address this.  The law currently states that you are required to provide a report within 30 days

In the 74C rewrite this is being addressed.  Right now, if you with hold work product – you can get in trouble.

 

Ruth Reynolds asked  – What are the three most common reasons a grievance is filed? Competitors

McDarris stated that failure to communicate with clients – failure to provide reports

Usually clients just want to know what is going on – if you’ll call them back and stay in touch, usually that’s all they want.

 

Ruth Reynolds asked – What constitutes a branch office?

You must have a principal office.  That information is on file with the board.  If you operate in another area -  If you establish an address and a telephone number the board can say that you have a branch office.

The board looks at whether there is any attempt to mislead the public – any public deception.  That will be the central issue with that.

If you run an ad to do work in another town – you have to keep in mind – that the client may file a complaint.

 

Audra Coleman asked – If you have an ad in a newspaper – that does not list an address but lists only a tollfree number – and lists themselves only as a NC PI is this a violation?

 

McDarris doesn’t think this would be a violation

 

Audra Coleman followed up by asking – How about if when they answer the phone they say that they have PIs all over NC?

 

McDarris responded - If the person who set this up is licensed and the person they are subcontracting with is licensed - There is no problem

 

Then a discussion ensued regarding Associates.  The rule is that that as long as you notify the Board – in writing – that Associate X will be working for you and that their sponsor is aware of this arrangement and has approved it.

The sponsor is still ultimately responsible for their PIAs

The length of time worked does not effect the necessity to notify PPS

The notification can be faxed or by Email or by snail mail

 

Ruth Reynolds asked about the legalities of using GPS units.

McDarris stated he did not have specific information on this matter.  He knew there was numerous criteria that had to be met – He suggested that these cases end up in court because nobody really knows the answer.

It was suggested by a member that if you don’t hard-wire the GPS that you’re okay,

McDarris stated that had never been decided.

 

Jeff Kiker asked –Where do all the rules come from that we don’t usually find out about until we don’t abide by them?

 

Mr McDarris briefly explained the procedure through which rules are created.  He provided that all rules are published in the North Carolina Register.  These are also known as the Administrative Code.

 

Ruth Reynolds asked about the practice of PIs repossessing cars.

McDarris – PPSB doesn’t directly govern that.  Anyone who is going to repo a car has to be registered with NC Dept of Insurance.  If approached, PPSB would find a complaint of that nature is outside their jurisdiction and it would be passed on the NC Dept of Insurance.

 

Ted Gartman asked about the clarification of a “Staff Investigator”

 

The exemptions section ([sic]of 74-c) states that a staff investigator is an agent or employee or an attorney  and they are exempt as long as they are working on a case that is within the principles practice of law.

The term “agent” is a very broad term under NC Law.  PPSB has interpreted this to mean one law firm.  Because of the agency language that is in the law – there will be problems with this.


 

Jim Davis – Asked about limiting who attorneys can hire

There would probably be a battle on that

Inaudible……………

 

McDarris - It doesn’t matter who pays the PI, but it does make a difference who the contract is with.

 

Audra Coleman – For example, A company is set up to do background searches – At ABC company there is no licensed PI.  They do pre-employment screening as well.  There are exemptions for pre-employment screening.

 

McDarris -  I was unable to get the answer to this.

 

Ted – Asked about whether someone who does computer forensics has to be licensed

McDarris – For many years, the law has been behind technology.  That is the case in that matter.  The law does not clearly address this yet.  He stated that the line is crossed once you write in your report information that shows that you have interpreted the data on a computer and not just obtained the data.

 

Break

 

Reports

President Reynolds announced that all reports would be tabled until the next meeting where hopefully the Board will have a quorum.  No motions were  made.  Reports were provided for information to the members only.

 

Secretary’s Report

WRITTEN COPY PROVIDED

 

 

Treasurer's Report

JEFF PROVIDED A WRITTEN COPY

 

Membership – Jim Mabry

No written report

Jim stated that there are 208 members

0 Business Affiliates

Jim restated his original challenge

He provided some of the information regarding some of the things that he has that are going into the new membership packet.  No packets have been sent out at this time. He stated that the transition has not been smooth and requested support of the membership.  He stated that he has a passion for the membership and that he wants to do whatever he can to increase membership.

Ruth thanked him for all his hard work and for organizing the new membership packets

 

Training and Education – Ted

Most of the training info revolves around armed and unarmed guards

On the website a button has been added that will show the training calendar

In the work section with PPS  in Greensboro – there were few PI issues

The attorney addressed the issue regarding “Staff Investigator”

Can Firearms trainers qualify themselves – the ruling on this is NO

An instructor can issue a test for his training but he cannot pass or fail that student based entirely on the test given.  Instructors can use this as a tool only until the testing is standardized.  There is a lot of expense involved in “validating a test”  Rick Clayton stated.  He can as an instructor – give a test and if for any reason he does not feel the person is qualified he does not have to put his name on the certificate – however that individual with substandard skills can go elsewhere and get their certificate

 

ClickCom – Site has been upgraded and is still under construction

 

Yahoo Group – The listserv that we have been using – has suffered some issues.  The site will have an administrator

The second listserv was started to satisfy the need for a place for marketing

 

NEW BUSINESS

Jim Mabry – brought up an additional situation where a PI has been accosted by law enforcement and LEO also provided info to PI’s target Jim is working on this and Wayne Woodard is aware

 

Tinting law – Jim is working on this with Rep. Snow regarding a bill that will allow us to be exempt from dark window tinting

 

Ruth Reynolds brought up the issue of protecting our identities while we are conducting surveillance or serving process. She is going to go to the board and ask for laws that will help us do this. For example, being able to use tag covers, and having an address that is not physical once the tag is run.

Ed Cobbler stated that PIs had an exemption years ago but it was abused and was taken away.

            We have a new breed in law enforcement that will harass us.  They have no respect for us.  We must all stand our ground and not give up our information.  We can’t allow them to intimidate us.  Ruth brought up laws she carries in her credentials wallet that Russ Thomas had made up some time ago.

 

Audra  Coleman stated that new laws are taking away our access to info – the cell toll issue – This she thinks is due to the privacy act.  She warned that if any PI uses this type of information not to provide it to their client.  She stated you were asking for trouble if you do.

Ted Gartman suggested that this information be used only as a tool and then have the attorney subpoena the records.

 

Tom Rose – As far as protecting ourselves.  We need to also protect our loved ones

 

Jim Davis – There is a move in law enforcement now to bring local law enforcement and private security closer together.  Since 9/11 things have changed.  Much of government is dealing with privacy.  Our industry is going to grow and to mature in the next few years.  If you come together as a community to protect your territory and your interests you will be better served.  I think that the relationships that are being developed between this assoc and the PPSB is a wonderful thing.  It’s going to allow all the things you need as well as everything that is needed to make sure you are doing the best job that you can.

LEO is not against PIs.  The complaints come from “Ed’s new breed of LEO”

He is working on a strategy to bring Law Enforcement and Private Security together.  He suggested that NCAPI become a part of that.  This is coming down from a national level.

 

Ruth – Yes .  It’s all about recognizing and being inclusive.  She suggested they talk further.

 

There was no other new business.

 

Ruth Reynolds

Next year is our 20th year as an association.  She suggested that we have a special pin for 20th year.  She also suggested that we have a printed directory next year as well.

She asked for suggestions from membership for special things that can be done next year.


She wanted to let the membership know that our meeting room today was free.

She stated the next full membership meeting will be in August  in the Charlotte or Concord area.  We are waiting for info from PPS staff for this.

 

Brief Discussion of Possible Seminars

The Reid Technique was discussed.

A list of seminars that have been requested over the last few years was provided by the Secretary.

President Reynolds asked that Members contact her with ideas.

 

Also mentioned was information on Regional Breakfast meetings and identification of local representatives.

 

Continuing Education – Ted Gartman, Rick Clayton and Ruth Reynolds have been working on the curriculum for training for more than a year.  Ted Gartman stated that the hope is the continuing education will help us fight the PPS members who want to increase the number of hours an associate has to work to get licensed.

 

Ted Gartman explained further about the necessity of additional training.

Bill Dover suggested they add Mr.Purvis at Rowan/Cabarrus Community College

Jim Davis also suggested that we contact the Community College in Fayetteville

 

Jim Mabry wanted to let everyone know that he sent an email to the Board suggesting that we have a PI of the year.

 

Rick Eatmon came to speak regarding his case and what was involved.  Information on Rick’s case was intentionally not included in the minutes.

 

The meeting was adjourned at 4:30pm.

 
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