Plain English Style

| January 11, 2016

Plain English Style

Revise the following sentences by applying all the guidelines mentioned in this chapter. When you change passive verbs to active, it may be necessary to make some assumptions about the agent of the action, because the sentences are taken out of context.

a. Based on our review of the available records, conversations with the various agencies involved, including the Fire Department and the Police Department, and a thorough survey of the site where the spill occurred, it was determined that the site contained chemicals that were hazardous to human health.
b. After seven hours at the negotiation table, the union representatives and management decided that the issues they were discussing could not be resolved that evening, so they met the next day at the hotel complex, at which point they agreed on a new contract that would increase job security and benefits.
c. It is recommended by us that your mainframe computer system be replaced immediately by a newer, more up-to-date model.
d. After the study was completed by the research team and the results were published in the company newsletter the following month, the president decided to call a meeting of all senior-level managers to discuss strategies for addressing problems highlighted by the research team.
e. Our project activities can be generally described in this way. The samples were retrieved from the site and then were transported to the testing lab in the containers made especially for this project, and at the lab they were tested to determine their soil properties; the data were analyzed by all the members of the team before findings and conclusions were arrived at.
f. The old asbestos tile was removed. The black adhesive was scraped off. The floor was sanded smooth. The wood arrived shortly. The floor was installed.
g. It was suggested by the team that the company needs to invest in modern equipment.
h. It is the opinion of this writer that the company’s health plan is adequate.
i. Shortly after the last change in leadership, and during the time that the board of directors was expressing strong views about the direction that the company was taking, it became clear to me and other members of the senior staff that the company was in trouble.
j. Our weed-spraying procedure will have minimal impact on shrubbery that surrounds the building site.

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