DENVER—It’s the kind of grammar dilemma that could drive a schoolteacher crazy, and Colorado lawmakers are on the case. A bill given preliminary approval in the state House Tuesday clarifies the difference between “must” and “shall.” The so-called “authority verbs” are frequently used in legislation to state that an entity or person is directed to do something.
The legislation approved Tuesday states that “shall” means that a person has a duty. The word “must” means a person or thing is required to meet a condition for a consequence to apply.
Lawmakers joked around using Latin phrases before approving the measure on a unanimous voice vote. One more vote is required before the grammar bill moves to the Senate.
House Bill 29: http://bit.ly/XUKD9D