Text: S.Res.576 — 110th Congress (2007-2008)All Bill Information (Except Text)

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Agreed to Senate (07/11/2008)


110th CONGRESS
2d Session
S. RES. 576

Designating August 2008 as “Digital Television Transition Awareness Month”.


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
May 22, 2008

Mr. Hatch (for himself, Ms. Klobuchar, Mr. Biden, Mr. Voinovich, Mr. Cornyn, Mr. Burr, Mr. Tester, Mr. Barrasso, Mr. Grassley, Mr. Schumer, Mr. Durbin, Mr. Dorgan, Mr. Inhofe, Mrs. Boxer, Mr. Coleman, Ms. Cantwell, Mr. Cochran, Mr. Craig, Mr. Sanders, Mr. Specter, Ms. Landrieu, Mr. Rockefeller, Mr. Akaka, Mr. Nelson of Nebraska, Ms. Snowe, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Roberts, Mr. Cardin, Mr. Crapo, Mr. Wicker, Mr. Hagel, and Mrs. Feinstein) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

June 12, 2008

Reported by Mr. Leahy, without amendment

July 11, 2008

Considered, amended, and agreed to with an amended preamble


RESOLUTION

Designating August 2008 as “Digital Television Transition Awareness Month”.

Whereas, starting February 17, 2009, full-power television stations will shut down their traditional analog signals and will broadcast in digital only pursuant to the Digital Television Transmission and Public Safety Act of 2005 (47 U.S.C. 309 note);

Whereas some studies indicate that 64 percent of consumers know about the transition to digital television, and of those consumers 74 percent have major misconceptions about the impact of the transition on their television services;

Whereas many consumers who are unaware of both the transition and the Government coupon program crafted to defray the cost of a converter box may be left without any television service after February 17, 2009;

Whereas markets in the West and Mid-West have the highest percentage of consumers who rely on over-the-air television signals;

Whereas the Salt Lake City, Utah, area has the single highest percentage of consumers who rely on over-the-air television signals among major cities in the United States, with nearly 23 percent of all households with television sets, more than 200,000 homes, relying on free analog television signals;

Whereas more than 20 percent of homes with television sets in Fresno, California, and Minneapolis, Minnesota, also rely solely on free over-the-air television signals;

Whereas the transition to digital television is significant to vulnerable populations such as senior citizens and low-income and minority households; and

Whereas designating a “Digital Television Transition Awareness Month” will help Congress to encourage the development of local action plans focused on strategic outreach to the communities most affected by the transition to digital television, including senior citizens and residents of rural areas: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the Senate—

(1) designates August 2008 as “Digital Television Transition Awareness Month”—

(A) to increase public awareness regarding the February 17, 2009, transition to digital television; and

(B) to encourage consumers to become educated about the steps they need to take to retain their television service, including possibly participating in the Government coupon program for obtaining converter boxes;

(2) encourages consumers to make the transition to digital television well before February 17, 2009; and

(3) encourages local nonprofit organizations, such as religious congregations, scout troops, and school-based community service groups—

(A) to assist households to apply for and obtain Government coupons and converter boxes and to install converter boxes; and

(B) to educate consumers about Internet websites and other sources of valuable information regarding the transition to digital television.