October 2, 2008

McCaskill Staff to Discuss Transition to DTV with Constituents in Memphis

WASHINGTON , D.C. – Over the past year, members of U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill’s staff have regularly traveled throughout the state to hear from local residents. As the nation approaches the end of the transition to digital television (DTV) on February 17, 2009, staff members announce recently a series of “Kitchen Table Talks” specifically aimed at informing Missourians about the DTV transition.

One such event has been scheduled for Tuesday, October 7th from 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Keith’s Cafe in Memphis.

The purpose of these Kitchen Table Talks is to inform Missouri residents about the government-provided resources available to them as they transition to the new system. Missourians should also feel free to talk to the McCaskill staff members about other issues important to them.

As part of the transition, all analog televisions not connected to cable, satellite, or a digital converter box will go dark on February 17, 2009. Americans, especially senior citizens, depend on television programming to provide them with important information, including weather alerts, emergency information, and breaking news. Without taking action, over 400,000 Missouri households will not be able to receive a TV signal when they wake up on February 17.

“It’s always important that I hear Missourians’ opinions on the issues affecting our state, but I also want to reach out to people to make sure they understand what the government can do for them. The DTV transition is something that will affect thousands of Missourians, and too few are prepared for it. We need to get the word out about how the government can help,” McCaskill said.

The federal government is sponsoring a coupon program that will provide two $40 vouchers to help Americans purchase converter boxes for their analog television sets, which range in price between $40 and $60. Consumers must request their coupons, and already over 20 percent of coupons available for distribution have been distributed. To find out more about the transition or order a coupon, the public can call 1-888-DTV-2009 or visit dtv2009.gov.

Kitchen Table Talks were originally conceived as a way to give constituents an opportunity to provide McCaskill with feedback on the issues affecting Missouri families. The events also give residents a chance to learn how their senator’s office can assist constituents on a range of federal government issues. People attending the Kitchen Table Talks are welcome to bring their ideas and concerns about any issues facing Missouri and the country.

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