Senate Budget Committee OKs DTV Bill


The Senate Wednesday marked up and passed, with debate but without changes, the budget reconciliation package containing the Commerce Committee's DTV hard date and subsidy language.

Unlike the House version of the DTV transition bill passed Wednesday, the Senate DTV bill is confined by its rules to simply the date--April 7, 2009, and allocations for a digital-to-analog subsidy--$3 billion--and other communications-related expenditures with a portion of the proceeds from the auction of analog spectrum reclaimed after the switch.

The differences between that Senate language and the House bill, which has a $990 million subsidy and Jan. 1, 2009, hard date for switching to digital broadcasting, will eventually have to be reconciled in committee.

The Senate reconciliation package is targeted for a floor vote Monday.