History and Bylaws of the Georgia Polygraph Association.
On February 26, 1986, the Georgia Polygraph Association was incorporated as a domestic, non profit-corporation in the State of Georgia. This association of concerned and dedicated polygraph examiners and supporters was organized for the purpose of providing a forum for discussion, education and mutual support for its members. In 1988, the Georgia Polygraph Association supported passage of testing which was a model for polygraph laws around the country. In 1989, Congress passed the Federal Employee Polygraph Protection Act, which restricted polygraph testing of applicants and employees of the businesses engaged in interstate commerce. This law greatly reduced the volume of polygraph examiners engaged in the private sector. All federal, state, and local law government agencies were exempt under this law. As a result, the Georgia Polygraph Association became dormant and in 1992, the Georgia State Legislature repealed the Georgia Polygraph Examiners Act, which required licensing provisions for polygraph examiners in the State of Georgia.
On May 17, 1997, a group of concerned law enforcement and private polygraph examiners met for the purpose of reorganizing the Georgia Polygraph Association. All active polygraph examiners in the state of Georgia were notified and a meeting was held on August 29, 1997 reactivating the Georgia Polygraph Association, Inc. Officers were elected and a by-laws committee was formed to establish new by-laws for the Georgia Polygraph Association, Inc., which are presented herein.
- Joel F. Montezinos, Chairman
- Swanee Owen
- Robert C. Turner
- Price A. Williams
- Richard D. Rackleff
Article I - Objectives
- To organize an association of polygraph examiners dedicated to the establishment of the highest professionalism, ethics and integrity within the polygraph profession in the State of Georgia.
- To encourage the adherence to recognized and accepted professional standards of polygraph procedures and techniques.
- To provide for and promote the exchange of information relevant to the polygraph profession among its members.
- To encourage and support research, education and training in the field of polygraph in order for its members to continue to develop their understanding of the polygraph and its uses.
Article II - Membership
- There are three categories of membership: Full Membership, Intern Membership, and Affiliate Membership.
- All full members and interns will have voting rights.
- FULL members must meet the following requirements
- Must be 21 years of age.
- Must be a citizen or legal resident of the United States of America.
- Must have a high school diploma or equivalent.
- Must not have been convicted of a felony or any crime of moral turpitude.
- Must be a graduate of a formal polygraph school approved by the Executive Board.
- Must complete thirty (30) hours of approved training every two (2) years, training to be approved by the Executive Board or its designated committee.
- Must abide by a set of Professional Standards of Polygraph Procedures and Techniques as established by the Association.
- Must have completed an internship with an experienced examiner consisting of a minimum of 25 polygraph examinations.
- INTERN members are individuals who have not completed all the requirements of a full membership set out in Article II, Section A.1.
- Training requirements apply to Full members only. Full members who fail to meet the two year training requirements will retain membership as Intern members until the training deficiency has been corrected.
- AFFILIATE members are individuals who possess a sincere interest in the polygraph profession.
- Applicants may include representatives of polygraph instrument manufacturers; persons involved in research of polygraph instrumentation or procedures, and retired polygraph examiners who do not meet the requirements for full membership.
- It is within the authority of the Membership Committee to accept any individual as an affiliate member who has a valid interest in the polygraph profession.
- Affiliate membership is evaluated by the Membership Committee on an annual basis, during the period of dues payment. The Membership Committee Chair will present the issue of any Affiliate Members whose actions belie a sincere interest in promoting the polygraph profession to the membership at a regular business meeting. A simple majority vote will prompt the removal of the individual from membership. Any dues payment received for continued membership will be returned.
- The procedure for membership acceptance is the same for all categories of membership.
- AFFILIATE members are not eligible to vote or hold elected office.
- AFFILIATE members have the right to participate in all activities of the Association and may, if appointed or elected, serve on or chair any committee.
- All members must pay established dues in a timely manner. Failure to do so will result in removal from membership. Defining "timely manner" is a procedural duty of the standing Executive Board but will be no shorter than six (6) months.
- All membership applications must be accompanied by payment of the application and annual membership fees.
- Persons joining the association after June 30th will not be required to pay dues for the following year.
- The Executive Board is empowered to levy assessments upon the membership, raise the fee and raise yearly dues.
Article III - Officers and Executive Board
- The elected officers of the Association shall be
- Board member at large
- Board member at large
- All officers, with the exception of Secretary and Treasurer, shall be elected for a one (1) year term. No member will hold an office, with exception of Secretary or Treasurer, for more than two (2) consecutive terms. All elected officers must be full members of the Association.
- The presiding President shall appoint a nominating committee who will determine a slate of officers to present to the membership prior to the Annual Meeting in January. At the Annual Meeting the President will call for and accept any nominations from the floor. If there are no other nominations, the vote may be held by s show of hands. If there are other nominations, the vote must be held by secret ballot. All officers will be elected by a simple majority.
- The duties of the officers are
The President shall be the executive officer of the Association. He or she shall preside at all regular and special meetings and shall appoint all committees not otherwise provided for. He or she shall be a member ex officio of all committees, enforce the Association By-laws and perform such duties as is customary to the office of President. In the event of a vacancy in the Vice-president or Secretary / Treasurer position, the President shall appoint a member to fulfill those duties for that term.
The Vice-president will assist the President in the discharge of his or her duties. In the absence of the President, the Vice-president will assume the duties and responsibilities of the President. In the event of a vacancy of the position of the President, the Vice-president shall assume that position.
As Secretary, he or she shall keep a record of minutes of the proceedings for the Association meetings, maintain a correct record of the total membership, issue notices of the meetings and agenda and conduct correspondences of the Association.
As Treasurer, he or she shall collect all dues, fees and assessments, present in writing, a financial report to be read to the membership at each meeting, pay the bills of the Association upon receiving a proper voucher and be custodian of all the funds of the Association.
- Executive Director
The retiring President will serve as the Executive Director and preside at Executive Board meetings. The Executive Director will have no voting power except in the event of a tie vote. A vacancy in this position cannot be filled by appointment and the President will assume the duties of the Executive Director.
- The Executive Board shall consist of the President, the Vice-president, the Secretary, the Treasurer and the Executive Director
Article IV - Committees
- The President shall appoint the following committees immediately upon his election to sit during his term of office
- Membership Committee
This committee will review the character of and investigate the background of all applicants for membership. All applicants must be cleared by this committee prior to acceptance as a member.
- Finance Committee
This committee shall audit all the finance accounts of the Association annually and report to the membership at the Annual Meeting. The committee may be requested to conduct an audit and make a special report of finances to the Executive Board at any time, at the request of the Board.
- Standards and Ethics Committee
This committee shall develop or review and submit to the membership any additions, deletions or alterations to the Professional Standards of Polygraph Procedures and Techniques adhered to by the Association. The membership may adopt any or all of the committee's suggestions by a two-thirds majority vote.
- Judiciary Committee
This committee shall collect and present to the membership at all meetings any available information on new polygraph legislation on both State and Federal levels and on past, current and pending court decisions affecting any aspect of the polygraph field.
- The President has the authority to appoint any other committees deemed necessary at any time in his tenure to sit during his term of office.
Article VI - By-laws
Upon adoption, and having been ratified by a minimum three-fourths majority vote of the current membership, these by-laws are accepted as the only true and legal by-laws of the GEORGIA POLYGRAPH ASSOCIATION, INC. Any previously adopted by-laws of this association are hereby declared null and shall have no further validity or legal force against this body or any of its constituents.
- Amendments to the by-laws of the Association may be proposed by any member of the Executive Board or by petition signed by at least ten (10) members in good standing.
- Proposed amendments shall be sent in writing to every member of the Association at least thirty (30) days prior to being voted on stating the exact amendment and giving the date of the vote.
- Amendments must be approved by a three-fourths majority vote of the membership in attendance at a regularly scheduled business meeting. If the attendance of voter eligible members at the business meeting does not form a quorum, the vote must be postponed. A quorum constitutes ten percent (10%) or more of the Association’s voter eligible membership. The date of postponement will be determined by the Executive Board, but will be no more than three regularly scheduled business meetings from the originally scheduled vote.
Article VII - Violations
Violations of established Association Professional Standards of Polygraph Procedures and Techniques will be investigated by the Executive Board. Only Full and Intern members may be found in violation of these Standards. If confirmed, the violation(s) will be discussed at a regular business meeting of the Association and put to a disciplinary action vote. The presentation, discussion and vote will be recorded in the official Association minutes. A simple majority vote will prompt a letter of censure to the member from the President. A more severe action, up to and including revocation of the individual’s membership, requires a three-fourths majority vote of the membership in attendance at a regularly scheduled business meeting. If the attendance of voter eligible members at the business meeting does not form a quorum, the vote must be postponed until the next regularly scheduled business meeting. A quorum constitutes ten percent (10%) or more of the Association’s voter eligible membership.
- If the confirmed violation(s) was committed by the sitting Association President, the discussion will be led by the Executive Director. If censure is voted for, the letter of censure will be authorized by the Executive Director.
- Subsequent and Repeated Violations
After a letter of censure has been issued, any subsequent and/or repeated violations that have been confirmed through investigation, and are unrelated to the initial investigation, will be presented for discussion at a regular business meeting of the Association and put to a disciplinary action vote. If the attendance of voter eligible members at the business meeting does not form a quorum, the vote must be postponed until the next regularly scheduled business meeting. The presentation, discussion and vote will be recorded in the official Association minutes. A simple majority vote will prompt any disciplinary action decided upon by the membership up to and including revocation of the individual’s membership in the Association.
- Felony Convictions
A felony conviction or conviction of a crime of moral turpitude, as defined by the standing Executive Board, will result in the immediate revocation of an individual’s membership in the Association.
- Complaint Procedure
Complaints may be made to any member of the Executive Board in writing or in person. Anonymous complaints will not be addressed by the Association.
Article VIII – Nonprofit Status
The Georgia Polygraph Association is organized exclusively for educational and scientific purposes under section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
No part of the net earnings of the Georgia Polygraph Association shall inure to the benefit of, or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that the Georgia Polygraph Association shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes described in section 501(c)(3). No substantial part of the activities of the Georgia Polygraph Association shall be the carrying on of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and the corporation shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing of or distribution of statements) any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any other provision of these articles, the Georgia Polygraph Association shall not carry on any other activities not permitted to carried on (a) by a corporation exempt from federal income tax under section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or (b) by a corporation, contributions to which are deductible under section 170(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code.
Upon the dissolution of this organization, assets shall be distributed for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or to a state or local government, for a public purpose.
Professional Standards of Polygraph Procedures and Techniques
Adopted on July 12, 2011
Section I – Ethics Statement
The membership of the Georgia Polygraph Association recognizes that the foundation for all professional conduct in the polygraph industry is individual and personal integrity. Integrity encompasses the basic concepts of reliability, veracity, and honor which are intrinsic to all aspects of the use of polygraph in commercial, government, and law enforcement settings. Member examiners are expected to conduct themselves in their professional and personal lives to a standard that precludes conduct so egregious as to refute the credibility of the member as a professional examiner.
Such egregious behaviors include deceptive business practices, violating confidences or ignoring conflicts of interest to the detriment of the profession, and pattern(s) of misconduct or inappropriate actions whereby the member knew or should have known that such conduct was or may have been a violation of federal, state, or other applicable law(s).
Members whose behavior violates this ethical standard may be determined to be in violation of the Association’s Professional Standards of Polygraph Procedures and Techniques. This would be determined by a majority vote of the quorum or larger membership at a regularly scheduled meeting.
Section II - Statement of Principles
Polygraph testing is an evolving field of science, intended to be used as a decision support tool. It is an aid to clients in making decisions about the truthfulness or deception of individuals in diagnostic and screening test circumstances, not an ultimate finder of fact. The results of polygraph examinations are presented as objective, impartial, and scientific supporting information to aid a client in their professional evaluation of the examinee.
This set of standards and practices established recommended procedures for proper polygraph examinations. To the extent possible, member examiners are bound individually and collectively to the standards, objectives, and principals of practice of the Georgia Polygraph Association.
Section III - Standards of Practice
- The Georgia Polygraph Association (GPA) adopts the Standards of Practice of the American Polygraph Association (APA).
- Revision of the APA Standards of Practice will automatically be adopted as the Standards of .Practice for the GPA.
- Notifications required in the APA Standards of Practice apply. Notifications listed will be sent to the President of the GPA.
- All polygraph charts, question sets, written reports, data sheets, waiver forms, opinions of the examiner from chart analysis, and other pertinent physical or electronic work product will be kept on file in a safe place from the date of the examination for a minimum of three years or as provided for in the Georgia State Retention Schedule.
View the APA Standards of Practice from the APA Website.