John Steward of Jesus
  The "Good News" (Gospel) > Archives > "Official" Communications > "Paying" for Car Registration

"Paying" for Car Registration

January 12, 1982

(To the County Treasurer)

When I received my 1982 car license validation stickers from your office today, I left with you a promise to pay 56.00 units (dollars) of the money of the United States, upon official determination of what is, according to law, the substance of such money.

In your consideration of what is, according to law, the money used in your office, you may wish to consider the following possibilities:
1.    Gold.
2.    Silver.
3.    Copper.
4.    Paper.
5.    The goodwill and approval of bankers, commonly called “credit.”

If you are unable to determine what is, according to law, the money used in your office, then I request that you obtain such a determination from another officer of Sioux County, or of the State of Iowa, or of the United States.

Your response will be appreciated. I want to comply with the law in this matter, and I trust that you do too.

Copy to The Sioux County Attorney

(Undated response from the Treasurer)








January 14, 1982

(To the Treasurer)

Please excuse my failure to communicate. In my letter of January 12, 1982, I did not ask what your office will accept. I am aware that the public offices are accepting “any U.S. Currency” if tendered.

What I am concerned to know is, what is now by law the money in units of which public records are kept? Money is a valuable substance used in exchange, in payment of debts, for storage of wealth, and as a standard of value. Money is valued for its intrinsic qualities, which can be measured. For example, the amount of gold or silver money in a treasury can be confirmed by scientific measurement. A “dollar” is an abstract unit used in such measurement, just as “ounce” and “pound” are abstract units of weight. A “pound” does not exist except as a pound of something. So too, a “dollar” does not exist except as a dollar of something, such as gold or silver. My question therefore is: What is the money (substance) of which I owe you fifty-six dollars?

Federal Reserve notes are instruments of credit. They have very little intrinsic value. They are valued primarily as evidence of credit issued by private banks. Federal Reserve notes cannot be called money unless our money is only banking credit. I am not aware that any law has declared credit to be money.

Section 334.l of the Iowa Code describes your duties as receiving and disbursing money, and keeping a true account of such actions. What is the money of which you are keeping records? What is the substance of the money which the county has in its treasury? What is the money which those who are billed by your office are obligated to pay? If we are to interpret these numbers, we must know what is the money which is used as the standard of value in our accounting. Pending a determination of what is the substance of the money which we are using in our public offices, I gave you a public Office Money Certificate, which is a credit instrument.

Please understand that I am not trying to steal from your office. I will honor the promissory note which I gave you. I want to pay you the money which I owe, according to law. I am asking you to help me learn what is the money which you use in your office, and which I therefore owe. Gold and silver have at times been declared by law to be money in the United States. Is either of them still money, according to law? If not, what is now money, according to law?

Please understand that this is not addressed to you personally. It is addressed to you as the official to whom the law requires me to pay money.

We all know that our present monetary situation is confusing. If you are not able to answer my questions, I would be happy to discuss with you ways in which you can help to get answers for us and end our confusion. I want to promote understanding and harmony. I understand that you are busy, especially at this time of the year. Nevertheless, I do not believe that you may act in ways which are arbitrary, not permitted by law, or contrary to law. A determination of what the law declares to be money in the public offices is not a trivial matter.

It is my hope that you will contribute to a discovery of what is the law and the truth regarding our money.

Copies to:  The Sioux County Attorney
                  The Sioux County Sheriff

March 1, 1982

(To the Sioux County Treasurer)

I have not received a response to my letter of
January 14, 1982.

Section 3311.1 of the Code of Iowa lists the duties of the County Treasurer:

“The treasurer shall receive all money payable
to the county, and disburse the same...and shall
keep a true account of all receipts and disbursements....”

Please tell me, what by law is the money which you are receiving and disbursing?

If you do not know what is money, you cannot carry out your obligations under law. Therefore, as one of the people of Sioux County, I urge you to make it a matter of highest priority to determine what it is which you are receiving and disbursing. Knowingly making fictitious records would violate your oath of office.

Please respond as soon as possible, so that my
concerns may be satisfied.

Copies to:  The Sioux County Attorney
                  The Sioux County Auditor
                  The Sioux County Sheriff

March 4, 1982

(To the Treasurer)

You called me by telephone on March 2, 1982, after receiving my letter of March 1, 1982.

In that conversation, you accused me of fraud, as you had previously done at the Sheriff’s office on January 12, 1982.

You accused me of using tactics of delay.

You said that you are having my car registration revoked. You said that I will have to pay penalties to have the revocation lifted. You said that I will not be able to conduct any further business with your office until this matter is resolved.

You said that the money which is being used by people in daily affairs is the only legal money. You did not say what that money is.

Twice I asked you to send me a letter with the information and accusations you were presenting to me by telephone. Twice you said that you would not send such a letter. You said that you would send only a copy of sections of the Iowa Code which refer to the fraud of which you were accusing me.

On March 3, 1982, I received photocopies of four pages of Iowa laws and regulations, which you had sent without further comment. I have reviewed those pages.

I deny your accusations that I have done something fraudulent.

I have not delayed payment of any of my obligations. I discharged the fee for my 1982 stickers with a Public Office Money Certificate, which you accepted when tendered. I will honor the promise on that credit instrument, I want to pay that which I owe.

Perhaps you do not consider fees to be paid until you have received money in exchange for credit instruments (checks, notes, bills, certificates, etc.) . If so, please tell me what is money in your office, so that I may redeem the certificate.

I repeat, again, my question of concern: WHAT IS MONEY IN YOUR OFFICE? Please respond to my question.

Copies to:  The Sioux County Attorney
                   The Sioux County Sheriff

March 03, 1982

(From the Sioux County Sheriff)

Sioux County Treasurer, (name), has notified this office that payment for your 1982 registration plate fee for a 1977 Pontiac, plate number GJU459, has not been received by his office. As required by law, you are hereby notified that payment, in legal tender, must be received by the Sioux County Treasurer no later than, March 15, 1982. If such payment is not received by that date proceedings will be undertaken for the revocation of your registration and license plates.

Take notice and govern yourself accordingly.

March 8, 1982

(To the Treasurer)

On March 5, 1982, I received from the Sioux County Sheriff a letter, dated March 3, stating that my car registration will be revoked if you have not received “payment” by March 15. The letter does not specify what, nor the amount of what, must be paid. It merely states that payment must he made in “legal tender”.

To determine what is a sufficient offer (legal tender) of money in payment, we must know what is the money that is owed, and how to measure the owed amount. Otherwise we cannot determine whether that which is owed has been tendered. What is the money which you have as County Treasurer? What is the standard unit (dollar) by which you measure that money? In what vault or safe is that money stored?

For the license fee, I tendered a redeemable note, which you accepted. It is my understanding that most fees payab1e to you are discharged upon the tender of non-redeemable “notes”, and checks which can be “cashed” for such “notes”. Those “notes” are credit receipts, issued by private banks. Such “notes” are not money, nor are they redeemable in money. They are non-redeemable receipts of credit. Credit is not money.

It seems that you are either unable or unwilling to answer my question. To permit this matter to become entangled in legal procedures would only confuse the issue. Accordingly, I will exchange some non-redeemable “notes” for the redeemable note which I gave you earlier.

I repeat, again, my question of concern:


If you wish to respond, please do so within ten days.

March 19, 1982

(To The Sioux County Board of Supervisors)

As you may remember from my letter to you last year, I am concerned because we value non-redeemable paper credit receipts as if they were money. Such receipts are only souvenirs of bad debts.

Even If you do not share my general concern, you should be interested to know what is money, according to law.

Recently I tried to learn what is money in one of the county offices.  As the enclosed letters show, such information is not easily obtained.

In order to perform their duties, the county officers must know what is money. I ask you to seek a determination of what the law says is money in the county offices.  More precisely, I ask you to seek answers to these questions:

1. What substance is standard money in the county offices?
2. What definition of a unit (dollar) of that money is used to audit county records?

Your attention to this matter will be appreciated.

(Response from the County Auditor)

April 1, 1982

The Board of Supervisors has asked me to inform you that they have reconsidered your request for a definition of money. The board believes that the term is commonly understood and the public would not benefit from further discussions about its definition.

In addition, the Board of Supervisors does not have a problem with money definitions and must organize its time for solving problems which demand their time and efforts.