I've noticed that people from the Washington, Oregon area tend to omit "to be" when describing something that needs to be completed. For example, just today one of my consulting engineers sent me an update on a construction project wherein he stated, "The raw water line still needs tested." He did not make a typo. Is this just a grammatical form used by folks in this area?

  • 7
    It's not just the Northwest: english.stackexchange.com/q/5407/24489 Aug 27, 2015 at 18:13
  • Middle Tennessee as well. My ex-wife and all her family habitually omitted "to be". Aug 27, 2015 at 18:22
  • Washingtonian here. This is news to me -- I've always, always known it as a Midwest construction! Where in Washington/Oregon might it occur?
    – user124856
    Mar 18, 2019 at 5:06

1 Answer 1


Being former military, I've lived in several states throughout the Midwest, South of the Mason Dixon line and west of the Mississippi. I've come across the omission of "to be" in each state I lived. Although It does seem to creep up it certain circles more than others.

I think, and this is only an opinion, that the omission is more of an endeavor to be succinct.

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