(UPDATED 1:15PM) NEW YORK CITY - Bill O'Reilly says he's too busy to continue hosting "The Radio Factor," despite being one of the most successful shows on the air right now. That opens a 2-hour scheduling gap at hundreds of stations nationwide, including two in our area.
In a New York Daily News article published online last night, O'Reilly explains he's been devoting more and more time to his Fox News Channel television show, resulting in him working "60, 65 hours a week and I just can't keep doing that."
By eliminating the radio show (2 hours/day on-air, not counting prep time), O'Reilly says he can be more focused on the TV show and other ventures like his website and his weekly syndicated newspaper column.
Locally, "The Radio Factor" airs on WIBX/Utica from 6-8pm, and on WTNY/Watertown from 4-6pm. The show airs live from noon-2pm, but WIBX and WTNY are among many affiliates that tape-delay O'Reilly in order to carry Rush Limbaugh live.
WIBX Program Director Gene Conte says, "we will miss Bill, but there is a wide range of programming possibilities out there." He's currently reviewing those options. CNYRadio.com has also contacted WTNY Program Director Jim Petiford; we await his response.
O'Reilly, 59, didn't announce a definite end date for the show, only telling the newspaper it will happen sometime in the first quarter of 2009.