House Delays Vote on Digital Switch Delay to Wednesday

Feb 2, 2009  •  Post A Comment

The House of Representatives vote on delaying the digital TV transition now is set for Wednesday, not Tuesday.
The House Rules Committee today issued a notice saying it would meet tomorrow to set the rules under which the House would debate the DTV bill, but not until 5 p.m. Tuesday.
House aides said that means the House floor vote will take place on Wednesday.
The House is voting on a bill that has already passed the Senate that would delay the DTV transition from Feb. 17 to June 12.
As the House prepared to vote this week, some House Republican opponents of any delay, in a letter to acting FCC chairman Michael Copps questioned reassurances given in the Senate that the legislation would allow TV stations the choice of switching early rather than waiting until June 12.
U.S. Rep. Joe Barton, R-Texas, the ranking Republican on the House Energy & Commerce Committee, and U.S. Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., the ranking Republican on the committee’s telecom panel, suggested worries about interference issues would in fact prevent most stations from switching early.
In their letter, Rep. Barton and Rep. Stearns suggested the FCC had been “inundated” with requests from stations wanting to switch early.
“Our understanding is that, because of interference concerns, most broadcast stations would not be allowed to transition under FCC rules until around the time that all broadcast stations transition,” said the letter. The congressmen expressed concern that “broadcasters and the public at large have been misled as to how many stations would be allowed to transition voluntarily.”


  1. Get it over with! This has dragged out too long. The public has had how many years of notice? And they are tired of the notices and ready to switch, at least as I hear from customers of mine.
    Who is not ready? the senior citizens, that is who. And they never will be, until the switch and they take action. Working a phone bank for a local TV station, I get calls from those 50 and over, not from those younger. Most of the calls, I would estimate 50%, are “My coupons expired, so how do I get new ones?”. I hate to tell them they are out of luck. the rest of the calls on last week’s phone bank were how to hook it up, how to work it, and why am I not receiving some stations.
    Prolonging this date will not help, it just puts off the inevitable. If it must be delayed, allow stations to cut power 10% a month so viewers notice a change and get motivated to act.
    Get it over with now!

  2. I’m waiting foe the deadline to be pushed. Then, I can’t wait until Feb 17 passes and some stations in a market shut off their analog, while others do not. Think of the viewer calls. It’ll be CHAOS, and I will laugh and laugh and laugh.

  3. This is ridiculous. Like others have said, just keep February 17th. Put money back in the coupon fund and be done with it. You’re always going to have those who don’t even order their coupons until the day or two before. That’s their problem.

  4. What’s ridiculous is that we allowed Congress to push through this legislation to benefit cable companies, manufacturers, and retailers…at the expense of consumers who were once led to believe the airwaves are free to the public.

  5. “Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself.”
    Mark Twain

  6. Opinions are like @## holes’s Everyone has one!
    I will not switch to digital! I will go down with the analog ship!

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