Mediacom making changes in Livingston

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Residents of Livingston will soon be paying more and getting more with their Mediacom Family package. The package, which will see an increase of two channels, will also see a rate increase of $2. The price adjustment will take place on April 15 and all customers will receive a copy of notice, which contains the new rate information and channel lineup.

Barbara, who attended Mondays meeting of the Livingston City Council as a representative of Mediacom, said the rate increase was a necessary evil to help with costs.

“Rate increases are not a pleasant thing,” Barbara said. “But it is part of business. Our business, like any other business and our business like any other has expenses that continue to go up.”

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Barbara said the expenses range into every aspect of the cable company.

“Programming is the most important expense that we have,” Barbara said. “Along with that, we have technology and improvements in the area. We also have training. We train our field service throughout the year with products and launches and so forth.”

The rate for the family plan will increase from $45.95 to $47.95, an increase of $2. Barbara said the cost was based on an increase in channels.

“We do our service on a cost per channel,” Barbara said. “Last year, in 2004 we had 67 channels on family cable here. It was 69 cents per channel. This year, we have 69 channels and it is still at 69 cents per channel. The cost per channel really didn’t increase.”

Over the past five years the cost per channel has actually gone down. As a comparison, in the year 2000 there were only 41 channels with Livingston Mediacom at a cost of 82 cents per channel. The service has actually seen an increase in channels with a decrease in cost per channel.

One customer in attendance said the rate increase was not her main concern. Cable subscriber Becky Hankins said she would like to see an increase in the level of service.

“The most trouble we have had is with bad weather,” Hankins said. “During Sunday’s weather you could not get channel three out of Meridian and you could not get channel 11 out of Meridian or four out of Birmingham or 13. The people who have been troubleshooting have been very kind, but we are paying for service and we are wanting service and not getting it.”

Hankins said Mediacom personnel have been very helpful with in advising her on the problems, but she would like to se the issues solved.

“I really would like to see this improved,” Hankins said. “If we get the service I really would not complain. The employees are so courteous, but we want service also.”