This letter responds to a Congressional letter requesting that we provide information on the approximate cost of various administrative steps that might be necessary to administer a subsidy program for the purchase of digital converter boxes to advance the transition to digital television (DTV). Specifically, the letter identifies a number of administrative steps that might be required to administer a rebate program targeted to low-income households that rely solely on over-the-air television signals, and asks us to estimate the costs of specific administrative steps. Estimating the specific costs of these administrative steps is difficult because of the substantial uncertainty about exactly what would be required to implement them. The Congressional letter also notes that the administrative costs for the rebate and voucher programs that we reviewed ranged from 10 percent to 39 percent. However, due to differences in the scope of the rebate and voucher programs we reviewed and a potential DTV subsidy, it is not clear how applicable the administrative costs of these programs are to estimating the costs of a DTV subsidy.
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