CHARTERCOMM HOLDINGS, L.P.
NOTES TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS -- (CONTINUED)
ultimate effect of the 1996 Telecom Act on the Company's financial position or
results of operations.
The FCC may further restrict the ability of cable television operators to
implement rate increases or the United States Congress may enact legislation
that could delay or suspend the scheduled March 1999 termination of CPST rate
regulation. This continued rate regulation, if adopted, could limit the rates
charged by the Company.
A number of states subject cable television systems to the jurisdiction of
centralized state governmental agencies, some of which impose regulation of a
character similar to that of a public utility. State governmental agencies are
required to follow FCC rules when prescribing rate regulation, and thus, state
regulation of cable television rates is not allowed to be more restrictive than
the federal or local regulation.
14. EMPLOYEE BENEFIT PLANS:
The Partnership's employees may participate in Charter Communications, Inc.
401(k) Plan (the "401(k) Plan"). Employees that qualify for participation can
contribute up to 15% of their salary, on a before tax basis, subject to a
maximum contribution limit as determined by the Internal Revenue Service. The
Partnership contributes an amount equal to 50% of the first 5% of contributions
by each employee. For the period from January 1, 1998, through December 23,
1998, the Partnership contributed $305. During 1997 and 1996, the Partnership
contributed $262 and $149, respectively.
Certain Partnership employees participate in the 1996 Charter
Communications/Charterhouse Group Appreciation Rights Plan (the "Appreciation
Rights Plan"). The Appreciation Rights Plan covers certain key employees and
consultants within the group of companies and partnerships controlled by
Charterhouse and managed by Charter. As a result of the acquisition of Charter
and the Partnership, the Plan will be terminated and all amounts will be paid by
Charter in 1999. For the period from January 1, 1998, through December 23, 1998,
the Partnership recorded $4,920 of expense, included in management fees, and a
contribution from Charter related to the Appreciation Rights Plan.
15. ACCOUNTING STANDARD NOT YET IMPLEMENTED:
In June 1998, the Financial Accounting Standards Board adopted SFAS No.
133, "Accounting for Derivative Instruments and Hedging Activities." SFAS No.
133 establishes accounting and reporting standards requiring that every
derivative instrument (including certain derivative instruments embedded in
other contracts) be recorded in the balance sheet as either an asset or
liability measured at its fair value and that changes in the derivative's fair
value be recognized currently in earnings unless specific hedge accounting
criteria are met. Special accounting for qualifying hedges allows a derivative's
gains and losses to offset related results on the hedged item in the income
statement, and requires that a company must formally document, designate and
assess the effectiveness of transactions that receive hedge accounting. SFAS No.
133 is effective for fiscal years beginning after June 15, 1999. The Partnership
has not yet quantified the impacts of adopting SFAS No. 133 on its consolidated
financial statements nor has it determined the timing or method of its adoption
of SFAS No. 133. However, SFAS No. 133 could increase volatility in earnings