Colorado Senate Narrowly Approves Mandatory Private Investigator Licensing

By Paul Simon

Denver Private Investigator Blogger

A bill requiring Colorado private investigators to obtain licenses from the state by July 1, 2015 passed the Senate by a single vote Thursday despite vocal opposition from senators calling it a largely unwanted, unnecessary and costly burden on those in the profession.

The 18-17 vote – on straight party lines with Democrats favoring passage and Republicans opposed – came after sporadic debate over several days. In the process an amendment was attached which would let a debt estimated at $55,000 from the voluntary licensing program that has been in place for two years be paid off over the next six years from fees paid by private investigators,  rather than being made up by taxpayers. Program revenue estimates are based on a fiscal analysis projecting 400 investigators paying $300 a year to be licensed.

Bill sponsor Sen. Linda Newell, D-Denver, said licensing would  protect Coloradoans from a few “bad apples,” and that Colorado suffers from more of them because it’s one of a handful of state in the country that don’t license investigators.  “Colorado is now a hotbed for those who have been denied licenses in other states to come here, put up a shingle without absolutely anything to prove they have the knowledge of relevant Colorado laws,” she  said,  noting that no one would know if they were previously convicted felons elsewhere.

But Sen. Kevin Lundberg, R-Berthoud, countered the bill is a jobs killer. He warned that former law enforcement officers who perform investigative work part-time have said, “If you require us to go through all the hoops of licensing, ‘I’m out of here. It’s not worth the trouble.’”

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3 thoughts on “Colorado Senate Narrowly Approves Mandatory Private Investigator Licensing

  1. The nanny state we have become,perhaps this same group and Ms. Newell should license bartenders,pool boys and boy scouts and don’t forget about the 32 ounce soda. Purchasing a credential is a black eye to the industry however it appears some need to do just that.

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