Congress to criticize DTV transition preparations

Portions of a new report will be unveiled at subcommittee hearings Oct. 17 and Oct. 31.
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An investigative report expected to be highly critical of government and industry preparation for the DTV transition is expected from Congressional investigators in November, the “National Journal” reported.

The report will be issued by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress. It was requested more than a year ago by Rep. Edward Markey, (D-MA), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Telecommunications and the Internet Subcommittee.

Key portions of the new report will be unveiled at subcommittee hearings Oct. 17 and Oct. 31, with a GAO official testifying. The Senate Commerce Committee, chaired by Sen. Daniel Inouye, (D-HI), will hold a third DTV oversight hearing Oct. 17.

Advanced hints of the negative findings were revealed by Mark Goldstein, a GAO investigator, at a recent hearing. He charged that no one at the FCC and National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), the agencies overseeing the transition, is coordinating the transition. Both NTIA and the FCC have insisted they are doing the job, and they will defend their work at the hearings.

Last week, the NAB said it will make an announcement on Oct. 15 about the next phase of its DTV educational efforts.