Friday, February 6, 2009

A Delay in Digital Conversion

Minnesota residents who aren't ready for the conversion to digital television have been handed a reprieve. Congress has extended the date TV stations will be required to start broadcasting with new digital technology from February 17, to June 15. Congressman Jim Oberstar says television stations are ready to make this switch, but not all of their viewers are set up to receive the new digital signal.
Many older television sets will not work unless they are equipped with digital converter boxes with analog pass-through. However, a government coupon program to help consumers purchase converters has run out of funding, leaving nearly 40,000 Minnesotans on a waiting list. Oberstar says he has 4,700 constituents who are waiting for coupons.
An additional $650 million to fund the coupon program was included in the economic recovery bill that was passed by the House of Representatives last week.

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