0

I wrote the following sentence:

The Employment Insurance (EI) Act doesn’t state the criteria for establishing, delineating, and reviewing EI regional boundaries; it has delegated this responsibility to the CEIC and ESDC.

(1) I want to know if the above sentence captures the intended meaning:

I want to say to my reader that the EI Act does not list the criteria for establishing EI regions. The Act has delegated the responsibility of making regulations regarding regional boundaries to the CEIC and ESDC. Basically, CEIC and ESDC can make any regulatory changes with regards to EI regions. In simple terms, the two bodies don't just determine, type and state the criteria, they enforce it.

Here is the problem.

Someone complained that the sentence does not capture this meaning and instead reads like this:

"... it has delegated the responsibility [of just stating the criteria for establishing ...] to CEIC ..."

They say that my sentence sounds like as if the two bodies are only responsible for the written communication.

The sentence is meant to be in the footnote, and space is limited (there are more sentences with the above).

(2) I want to know if the complaint holds water or if it's just pedantic.

  • I honestly think that this question might be better suited for the Law SE; legal English is a dialect in its own right. – nick012000 Mar 30 at 5:48
1

Yes, your sentence means what you want it to mean; the complaint is not just pedantic--it is outright mistaken. In my experience with English language conventions, "this" means "the criteria." The sentence further clarifies what that criteria is, i.e. "establishing, delineating, and reviewing..." I will show how this works by parsing the two parts of the sentence separately, and then comparing the parts.

FIRST PART

The Employment Insurance (EI) Act doesn’t state the criteria for establishing, delineating, and reviewing EI regional boundaries;

I'm not sure how to find a grammar book or website to prove this, nor do I have the proper grammar terms on the tip of my tongue. However, based on my extensive reading experience in the English language for instructions and other literature, I parse the above sentence thus:

Bare Subject: Employment Insurance (EI) Act

Bare Predicate: doesn't state

Object of Bare Predicate: criteria

Modifier of the Object of the Bare Predicate: the

Subject Complement for Bare Predicate "doesn't state": for establishing, delineating, and reviewing regional boundaries

My apologies; I'm sure I've got some terms wrong but I think my meaning is clear. I will use the same terms for the Second Part of this sentence.

SECOND PART

it has delegated this responsibility to the CEIC and ESDC.

I parse it thus:

Bare Subject: it

Bare Predicate: has delegated

Object of Bare Predicate: responsibility

Modifier of the Object of the Bare Predicate: this

Subject Complement for Bare Predicate "has delegated": to the CEIC and ESDC

COMPARING THE PARTS

Because the second part of this sentence is separated from the first by only a semicolon, the two parts obviously refer to the same items. I will now pair up the items for easy comparison.

Bare Subject: 1 Employment Insurance (EI) Act; 2 it

Bare Predicates: 1 doesn't state; 2 has delegated

Objects of Bare Predicates: 1 criteria; 2 responsibility

Modifiers of the Objects of the Bare Predicates: 1 the; 2 this

The subject complements are probably not necessary for this part of the discussion; I am least confident about the terms regarding the parsing of those parts.

CONCLUSION

Employment Insurance (EI) Act = it

the criteria = this responsibility

It is not grammatically possible to divide up, or separate from each other, the three items listed under "responsibility," i.e. "this responsibility." "This" clearly means "the criteria for establishing, delineating, and reviewing EI regional boundaries."

| improve this answer | |
0

I agree with the complainer. You have sort of opened the door to the complaint by separating "stating criteria for" and "establishing..." etc. Maybe you could avoid that separation by saying something like:
The EI act delegates the entire responsibility for [blah blah] to the CEIC and ESDC.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.