Sharon McNary

Infrastructure Correspondent

Contact Sharon McNary

Sharon McNary is a correspondent for Southern California Public Radio covering infrastructure. She uses public records, public engagement sourcing and other methods (like good old fashioned shoe leather) to help draw stories from the experience, expertise and concerns of our communities as well as from political agendas. These days, she is covering the built environment around Southern California -- sidewalks, water and sewer systems -- to find out what's working, what's broken, and who's fixing it.

In her first three years at KPCC, Sharon launched KPCC’s Public Insight Network, a group of several thousand people who — by sharing their experiences and expertise — help the newsroom cover Southern California. People who respond to Public Insight Network questions have been included in many KPCC award-winning news reports, including investigative coverage of prison conditions, long-form narratives, and talk show segments.

A military veteran, McNary was a computer programmer before she was a journalist, so she has always sought out tech-savvy and creative ways to cover news.

McNary has worked in TV news and documentaries, radio, wire service and newspapers in the Southern California news market, developing award-winning investigative and computer-assisted reporting projects.

Following a mid-career public service break with the Peace Corps in Bolivia, McNary returned to print and multimedia reporting. She has covered disasters, government corruption, growth and immigration, often using databases, mapping and other technology tools to break news.

McNary is an avid cook, seamstress and knitter while her outdoor pursuits are competing in marathons and triathlons

Stories by Sharon McNary

El Niño rains test flood and mudslide prevention work

Clearing debris basins in mountains and foothills, raising the height of channel walls and constructing beach berms along the ocean -- will it be enough protection?

Private partnership recommended for LA Convention Center expansion

The old-school method is to borrow money to build the expansion. But a city administrator proposes putting the project in private hands to limit taxpayer investment

Assemblyman calls for investigation into Porter Ranch gas leak

Mike Gatto plans to use his status as newly-appointed chairman of the Assembly Utilities and Commerce Committee to head up a probe into the leak.

Porter Ranch leaking gas well detected underground

Special equipment was used to locate the well shaft thousands of feet underground, a first step to plugging it. That could take months.

Gigantic cargo ship to call at Los Angeles port

The Benjamin Franklin, if stood on its stern, would tower 200 feet above downtown Los Angeles' tallest building and is too big to fit through the Panama Canal.

Some in Porter Ranch fear reaction is as bad as gas leak

Thousands of families have left to avoid the smell and potential health risks. As lawsuits mount, some worry the community will never be the same.

LA pushes to force faster relocation after Porter Ranch gas leak

On Tuesday, L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer's office announced it is seeking a temporary restraining order against Southern California Gas Co over the gas leak in Aliso Canyon.

LA County declares emergency over Porter Ranch methane leak

Unlike the county, however, state officials say the massive gas leak doesn't rise to the level of an emergency, mostly because Southern California Gas Co. is paying most costs.

LADWP board approves water rate increases

The DWP's new rates follow a sliding scale of increases, depending on how much water a customer uses.

SoCal Gas delayed telling locals of massive methane leak

The company faces growing criticism that it notified state authorities of the natural gas leak, but delayed telling local residents and governments.

El Niño: FEMA says coastal residents, buildings at risk

Water treatment facilites, power plants, schools, hospitals and airports are among the structures vulnerable to coastal flooding caused by El Niño storms this winter

Watch: Infrared video shows Porter Ranch methane leak

Environmentalists shot the video using special cameras and are showing it to residents to illustrate the volume of methane leaking near their homes

Sewer plant hid syringes, other waste before Dockweiler Beach spill

Two separate spills a week apart left Dockweiler Beach covered in tons of medical and personal hygiene waste, a new Los Angeles city report says.

Luxe LAX lounge to help VIP passengers avoid paparazzi

Complete with federal TSA and customs officials paid for by a private operator, the remote passenger lounge would earn LAX about $34 million over the next 10 years.

Porter Ranch gas leak rotten-egg smell could cost SoCal Gas

While each verified nuisance smell complaint could carry a maximum $1,000-per-day fine, an out-of-court settlement is the most likely outcome, an AQMD spokesman said.