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City of Knoxville, Tennessee
Madeline Rogero, Mayor

For Immediate Release
Applications for TV Converter Box Coupons Available at Senior Summit
January 8, 2009 - Applications for TV converter box coupons - used to help pay for the boxes that allow older televisions to receive digital programming -will be available at the Regional Senior Summit at the BlueCross Healthy Living Expo.

The event, which serves seniors, their families and caregivers, is set for 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Thursday, January 22, at the Knoxville Convention Center.

The simple, one-page application will also be available at Knox County’s Senior Centers. Information about the TV Converter Box Coupon Program can also be obtained by calling the City of Knoxville at 311.

Currently television stations broadcast in both digital and analog formats. Beginning February 17, however, broadcasters nationwide will transition to using only a digital, or DTV, format.

That means that people who receive free, over-the-air television programming on older analog televisions using a rooftop antenna or “rabbit ears” will have to install a DTV converter box to continue receiving programming after February 17.

This doesn’t apply to residents who receive television reception through some type of pay system, like cable or satellite. Also most new televisions sold after 2004 are equipped to receive digital programming.

Many older television sets, however, only receive analog signals.

According to the FCC Knoxville falls into a group of cities where at least 15 percent of the households rely on free, over-the-air signals for television reception.

The federal government initiated the converter box coupon program to help citizens using an analog television obtain the boxes. Each household is eligible to apply for up to two of the $40 coupons which can be used toward the purchase of the converter boxes.

Due to the demand for the boxes the U.S. Department of Commerce has announced recently that citizens who apply for the coupons are being put on a waiting list and will receive their coupons as funding becomes available.

Applications can also be submitted online at www.DTV2009.gov or by calling 1-888-DTV-2009.

The Regional Senior Summit at the BlueCross Healthy Living Expo is a partnership that joins the two events for the first time.

The Regional Senior Summit is sponsored by the mayors, district attorneys and sheriffs of Knox County and 16 other East Tennessee counties. The goal of the event is to promote senior health and to provide information aimed at protecting them from fraud and abuse in addition to other issues.

For more information about the Regional Senior Summit at the BlueCross Healthy Living Expo please contact Ben Sharbel at 215-4773.
For Immediate Release
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