Cox hiking cable rates in Arizona

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PHOENIX -- Cox Communications is raising the price Arizona residents pay for cable television.

The $5-per-month increase is attached to the company's most popular plans and kicks in next month. About two-thirds of Cox's customers will be affected by the hike.

Officials with the cable company said the increase is necessary to help cover the rising costs of programming.

In addition to the $5 increase for its Expanded Service, Cox also increasing the prices of its "Entertainment Paks" -- sports, movie and Latino programming --  as well as its premium channels.

The rates for telephone and Internet service are not affected by the price increase.

The last Cox rate increase was in February 2008.

Cox is not the only company raising its prices for television. Dish Network and DirecTV -- both satellite TV companies -- also rates their rates this year.