Title: The Public Revenue Education Council
Predominant dates: 1952-1985
Arrangement: Arranged in three series: 1) Correspondence and Publications by PREC President Noah Alper; 2) Other Officer Correspondence and Publications; 3) Council Brochures and Publications.
The Public Revenue Education Council (PREC) was established in the winter 1950-1951 during a series of meetings held in St. Louis by those concerned about the problems which arise from an improper source of public revenue. The PREC was incorporated as a non-profit educational institution by the State of Missouri on January 31, 1952.
Over the past 65 years, the PREC has largely followed a three-fold mission that includes disseminating information about: 1) the collection and expenditure of public revenue; 2) the elimination of artificial barriers to the production and distribution of wealth and services; and, 3) the removal of the barriers to the natural incentives which encourage maximum productivity.
According to an early brochure, the PREC recognizes two essential economic facts:
The first is that government has a source of revenue as naturally its own as do workers and owners of capital. This revenue arises from its activities in providing services and aiding private interests to produce their own amazing flow of services to the public…This general, community-generated value is measured in the market place as RENT-of-land. Therefore, RENT-of-land is the Natural Public Revenue of the community.
The second truth is that a tax is not a source of public revenue…a tax is like a pump—it draws from a source.
The PREC derives its operating income from contributions, grants, membership fees, and the sale of literature. Among the groups and organizations the PREC has distributed literature to include Missouri State representatives, area colleges and universities, and county and municipal tax and assessment departments.
Noah Alper of the Henry George School of Social Science-St. Louis Extension served as President of the PREC from the early 1950s through the 1970s. Alpers’ correspondence and other writings are found in Series One of this collection. Stanley Frederickson, whose correspondence and writings are found in Series Two, was Executive Director of the PREC throughout the 1980s. Series Three of this collection contains material published or reproduced by the PREC including annual reports and brochures.