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KCAL 9 L.A. to Launch 7-Hour Morning Local News Block

Los Angeles
(Image credit: FilmLA)

LOS ANGELES—KCAL 9, the CBS-owned independent station in Los Angeles, has announced plans to launch a local morning news franchise that will air from 4:00–11:00 AM, PT on weekdays, beginning this fall. 

The addition of these daily seven-hour newscasts will extend the KCAL 9 News brand to weekday mornings for the first time in the station’s history. 

In March 1990, KCAL 9 became the first television station in the country to launch nightly, three-hour local newscasts during primetime (8:00-11:00 PM), a move that has helped establish KCAL 9 as one of the most recognizable, trusted and popular local news stations in the Los Angeles market.

With the launch of KCAL’s morning newscasts, sister station CBS 2 has announced that it will  expand its commitment to national and global news coverage by airing live broadcasts of CBS Mornings From 4:00–6:00 AM, PT while also continuing to carry the West Coast editions of the CBS News’ morning program in its longtime 7:00–9:00 AM, PT time period.

KCAL 9’s morning news will air on both CBS 2 and KCAL 9 during the 6:00-7:00 AM hour.

The addition of KCAL 9’s morning news franchise will give CBS 2, KCAL 9 and the CBS News Los Angeles streaming channel a combined total of 91.5 hours of regularly scheduled live local newscasts per week – more hours than any other station in the Los Angeles market, the company said. 

“By launching morning news on KCAL 9 and adding a second daily broadcast of CBS Mornings on CBS 2, our local-to-global news organization is perfectly positioned to showcase its premium content on our broadcast and streaming channels in the Los Angeles market,” said Wendy McMahon, president and co-head, CBS News and Stations. “As one of the most trusted local news providers in Southern California, the window of opportunity for KCAL 9 News in the morning is wide open. We also believe this is an audience growth opportunity for CBS Mornings by giving early risers and commuters in the Los Angeles market the chance to watch live from 4:00-6:00 AM.”

“These bold moves will allow us to have the best of both worlds, with the strength of KCAL 9 News establishing a local news beachhead and two runs of CBS Mornings making CBS 2 a more prominent provider of national network news,” said Joel Vilmenay, president and general manager of CBS News and Stations’ local businesses in Los Angeles, including KCBS-TV, KCAL-TV, the CBS News Los Angeles streaming channel and “The investments we are making in people and technology will allow us to produce more hours of live, regularly scheduled local news than any other station in the market.”

Vilmenay added that KCAL 9 has already begun hiring additional full-time staff to support the production of the station’s morning newscasts.

George Winslow is the senior content producer for TV Tech. He has written about the television, media and technology industries for nearly 30 years for such publications as Broadcasting & Cable, Multichannel News and TV Tech. Over the years, he has edited a number of magazines, including Multichannel News International and World Screen, and moderated panels at such major industry events as NAB and MIP TV. He has published two books and dozens of encyclopedia articles on such subjects as the media, New York City history and economics.