AP NEWS

Suddenlink boots TV2 from cable lineup

March 12, 2019

LAUGHLIN — Customers of Suddenlink Television who watch TV2 KLBC have discovered the channel is not included within the system’s lineup in Laughlin, where TV2’s office is located, nor in Bullhead City, Fort Mohave and Mohave Valley.

TV2 management said Monday it isn’t known when — or if — it will return. The station contacting Suddenlink by Altice might have prompted the action.

After about a week spent trying to figure out why the station couldn’t operate, it was discovered Friday that a crucial fiberoptic link was damaged, said Bruce Clark, general manager and co-owner of TV2. Clark hosts “The Morning Show on TV2.”

Suddenlink by Altice said it didn’t own the line the station was using because it was the property of a past cable provider. Someone else was sought for assistance to make the repair.

Before the line repair was complete, however, Suddenlink posted a message on its Channel 2 where TV2 previously was broadcast: “Programming for KLBC Channel in Laughlin and Bullhead is no longer available.”

Suddenlink told TV2 it owes $70,000 in back pay for past inclusion within the channel lineup over about three years.

Clark disagreed with the cable provider’s view of the situation. He asserted there was no contract during that period so the company’s request for back pay is invalid.

He stated that actions taken by the station to make the cable provider aware of how important TV2 is to the community appeared to have been highly convincing.

The station pointed out that personnel continued trying to recover from the recession and explained what the station provides to the communities it serves.

TV2 donates at least $10,000 of airtime annually to local charities and organizations, according to Clark.

Clark also said he asked viewers of his show to email him with their thoughts on why the station was important to the area.

“To say we were overwhelmed by the response would be an understatement,” he said. “Within a week, we received hundreds of well-written support emails and letters.”

He emailed those to Jeff Kelly, the operations manager of Altice based in Flagstaff. He said Kelly asked for such information to provide it to upper management, and Clark said he assumed it worked because he hadn’t heard from Suddenlink by Altice “from that point forward.”

Clark pointed out that TV2 is being charged for a channel on cable television while out-of-town operations are paid by Suddenlink for rebroadcast of their signals.

“Over the last 20-plus years TV2KLBC had paid over $1.5 million to be on their system,” he wrote.

Further, cable customers were supposed to be given 30 days notice before the station was removed from the provider’s lineup, he stressed.

The station is streaming Clark’s morning show on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and the TV2 website, https://tv2klbc.com.

Clark said the station isn’t fully serving the community without being on local television.

“We try to promote our communities to our visitors in the hotels and RV parks,” Clark wrote about the matter. “We have been available to people that do not have or understand computers, seniors specifically.”

TV2 celebrates its 30th anniversary on Friday.

A representative of Suddenlink by Altice said the corporation wanted to withhold comment until the company had an opportunity to look into the matter further.