The Secaucus-based WWOR has launched a new 10 p.m. program to replace its recently canceled nightly news show.
The new program, called “Chasing New Jersey,” debuted last night and features former Republican congressional candidate Bill Spadea as its host or “ringleader.” The program, based in Trenton, features stories concerning New Jersey politics reported by a cadre of “chasers.”
The new show replaces WWOR’s nightly news broadcast, which was canceled last week. The cancelation resulted in a number of layoffs at the station, according to reports. Anchor Brenda Blackmon will remain at the station to produce and anchor news specials.
Not everyone is excited about the new programming on the Fox-owned station.
U.S. Rep. and Senate candidate Frank Pallone has called for a revocation of WWOR’s license because of the cancelation of the news show.
In a letter to FCC Acting Chairwoman Mignon Clyburn, Pallone said the station, which has operated in New Jersey since 1987, has failed the state.
“Unfortunately, despite this reality, WWOR has failed for over a decade to live up to its broadcasting obligations to New Jersey,” Pallone said in the letter. “Studies have shown that WWOR has provided less coverage of New Jersey politics than most of the New York-based television stations and has failed to provide adequate coverage of New Jersey news and public affairs. In addition, since purchasing WWOR in 2001, News Corporation, now 21st Century Fox, has done everything they can to avoid any commitment to serve as a truly New Jersey station.
“Now, WWOR has pulled the plug on the only newscast the station had left. This action deserves immediate enforcement by your agency. In fact, considering the license renewal application of WWOR is pending before the FCC, I believe that the current license should be revoked until you can place additional conditions on the station to ensure that WWOR is both based in New Jersey and provides local news coverage to the state.”