Look out for higher prices, Suddenlink advises Arkansas cities

The timing could have been better. As J.D. Power and Associates released survey results that cable subscribers are tired of paying more for service, Suddenlink was notifying Mountain Home, Arkansas Mayor David Osmon that higher rates were coming his way and adding that prices will concurrently rise in nearby Bull Shoals, Cotter, Flippin, Gassville, Lakeview and Midway.

Since Mountain Home requires 90 days notice of a planned rate increase, Suddenlink sent off a letter saying that prices for both basic and expanded basic service will be going up $3.52 a month. Also going up: installation, plus $5.05 to $40 and monthly safeguard, from $5 to $5.50 a month.

In a letter to the Mountain Home mayor, Suddenlink's manager of government and community relations for the mid-south region Maryce Cunningham explained that cable TV programming costs typically go up 6 percent a year, half of which Suddenlink swallows before passing along the other half.

At least some Suddenlink subs are safe from paying more--at least to Suddenlink. Shenandoah Telecommunications (Nasdaq: SHEN) has agreed to purchase Suddenlink systems in Maryland and West Virginia, raking in about 7,000 subscribers along the way. Financial terms, of course, went undisclosed.

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