2009 DTV switch dateWith less than 5-percent of US homes failing to make it under the analog shutoff limbo stick (and still a month to go), there's no reason that come June 12th a whole lot of stations won't be conducting their own shutoff festivities. Just to make sure that there won't be a pack of digital lemmings headed for a step function-like cliff, the US Senate has introduced the DTV Cliff Effect Assistance Act, which allocates $125 million through 2012 to help pay for digital repeaters and translators to fill in those areas that will go uncovered after the switch occurs. This is government money, so you know there's a few strings attached -- in this case, the new bits of infrastructure will also have to serve up wireless communications and broadband traffic where possible. Let's see -- more people with DTV and broadband wireless coverage? Add a tick in the "yes" column for us, please!

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