BRESNAN COMMUNICATIONS GROUP SYSTEMS
(A COMBINATION OF CERTAIN ASSETS, AS DEFINED IN NOTE 1)
NOTES TO COMBINED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS -- (CONTINUED)
DECEMBER 31, 1996, 1997 AND 1998
which are subject to "effective competition" or to services offered on an
individual service basis, such as premium movie and pay-per-view services.
Bresnan Communications Group Systems believes that it has complied in all
material respects with the provisions of the 1992 Cable Act, including its rate
setting provisions. However, Bresnan Communications Group Systems' rates for
Regulated Services are subject to review by the FCC, if a complaint has been
filed by a customer, or the appropriate franchise authority, if such authority
has been certified by the FCC to regulate rates. If, as a result of the review
process, a system cannot substantiate its rates, it could be required to
retroactively reduce its rates to the appropriate benchmark and refund the
excess portion of rates received. Any refunds of the excess portion of tier
service rates would be retroactive to the date of complaint. Any refunds of the
excess portion of all other Regulated Service rates would be retroactive to one
year prior to the implementation of the rate reductions.
Certain of Bresnan Communications Group Systems' individual systems have
been named in purported class actions in various jurisdictions concerning late
fee charges and practices. Certain of Bresnan Communications Group Systems'
cable systems charge late fees to customers who do not pay their cable bills on
time. Plaintiffs generally allege that the late fees charged by such cable
systems are not reasonably related to the costs incurred by the cable systems as
a result of the late payment. Plaintiffs seek to require cable systems to
provide compensation for alleged excessive late fee charges for past periods.
These cases are at various stages of the litigation process. Based upon the
facts available, management believes that, although no assurances can be given
as to the outcome of these actions, the ultimate disposition of these matters
should not have a material adverse effect upon the financial condition or
results of operations of Bresnan Communications Group Systems.
BCCLP entered into three letters of intent with three different cable
operators pursuant to which the BCCLP intends to sell a small cable television
system in Michigan and acquire cable television systems in both Michigan and
Minnesota. These transactions would result in a net cost to the BCCLP of
approximately $63,000, $2,000 was deposited for the acquisition in Michigan.
BCCLP expects to fund these transactions through the use of restricted cash,
cash flow from operations and additional borrowings.
Bresnan Communications Group Systems has other contingent liabilities
related to legal proceedings and other matters arising in the ordinary course of
business. Although it is reasonably possible Bresnan Communications Group
Systems may incur losses upon conclusion of such matters, an estimate of any
loss or range of loss cannot be made. In the opinion of the management, it is
expected that amounts, if any, which may be required to satisfy such
contingencies will not be material in relation to the accompanying combined
Bresnan Communications Group Systems leases business offices, has entered
into pole attachment agreements and uses certain equipment under lease
arrangements. Rental expense under such arrangements amounted to $3,208, $3,221
and $2,833 in 1996, 1997 and 1998, respectively.
Future minimum lease payments under noncancelable operating leases are
estimated to approximate $2,240 per year for each of the next five years.
It is expected that, in the normal course of business, expiring leases will
be renewed or replaced by leases on the same or similar properties.