Cox Communication’s contract to carry the NBC affiliate on its channel lineup expired because of disputes over price, according to a Cox spokesperson.
Cox and White Knight, the parent company of WVLA-NBC Channel 3 and 1003 and KZUP Channel 13 in Baton Rouge, have been in negotiations for permission to carry its programming on the Cox lineup, said Sharon Souther Bethea, Cox public affairs manager.
According to Bethea, White Knight has asked for a price increase three times greater than what Cox currently pays for the programming.
Cox and White Knight are still in negotiations to restore the channels, Bethea said.
Cox is required by law to receive permission from local broadcast stations to carry their signals on the channel lineup. The contract with White Knight expired at 11:59 p.m. Thursday, Bethea said.
A statement posted on WVLA’s website says, “All White (Knight) is requesting is that Cox pay fair market value for the NBC and local programming we bring to you, our viewers, every day.”
In addition to local programming, WVLA and KZUP carry popular programs such as “Sunday Night Football,” “The Voice,” “The Blacklist” and “Saturday Night Live.”