DTV Delay Exploration Put on Hold

The House Energy and Commerce Committee’s scheduled markup on a bill to delay the digital transition deadline was postponed Wednesday (Jan. 21). Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, said he wanted to give the Committee more time to “assess the implications of the Senate action.”

Last week, Senate Republicans blocked similar legislation, introduced by Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), to move the digital transition deadline from Feb. 17 to June 12.

Democrats, backed by the new Obama administration, are up in arms over the converter-box coupon program, which ran out of money, leaving nearly 2 million consumers on a waiting list.

“The transition to digital television is not going well,” Waxman said. “Delay of the deadline is our only hope of lessening the impact on millions of consumers. Without a short, one-time extension, millions of households will lose all television reception.”

Republican lawmakers are working on legislation that would allow the government to issue more converter-box coupons.