JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Suddenlink and the City of Jonesboro have set their meeting date for the two sides to air grievances.
Region 8 News first reported in Dec. 2019, that a meeting had been requested and agreed to, for a town hall-style meeting with Suddenlink cable-internet service customers.
The company is Jonesboro’s primary provider of cable and high-speed internet but has been criticized for various reasons by customers in Jonesboro and other cities around the state.
Those complaints became a problem for city officials, in part because of erroneous claims on the back of customers’ bills that the company’s franchise agreement is with the mayor of Jonesboro.
The agreement is actually with the state of Arkansas and has been for several years.
Brad Ayers, senior director of governmental affairs for Altice USA, told Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin the company would correct the wording on the bill, but the city says as of most recent statements, that correction has not been made.
The town hall-style meeting with representatives of AlticeUSA/Suddenlink will be in the St. Bernards Auditorium at 6 p.m. Feb. 27.
In December, Suddenlink representatives admitted that a recent “convergence” of software since Suddenlink was acquired by Altice USA created errors in billing as well as a “breakdown in communication to customers.”
The company has a new regional vice president, Jenny Massey, who now oversees northeastern Arkansas for AlticeUSA/Suddenlink.
“Our goal is to address these concerns and improve our service,” Massey said.
Those in attendance will be allowed to write down their questions, and the company representatives will address all or as many as possible.
“Some things we should be able to answer on the spot, and some we will take back with us to ensure we are providing the best service possible to our customers,” Massey said.
Even though the City has no authority over the internet/cable company, Perrin said he is pleased that Suddenlink leaders are coming to Jonesboro to address its customers.
He has also put out a call for more competition in the industry, asking other potential providers to study opportunities in Jonesboro.
“I told them that it is clear to me that their issues revolve around customer service,” Perrin said. “But if it comes to it, I can at the very least seek opportunities with other providers. To create more competition in our market, I think that is worth the effort.”