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

Rose Parade hires former Macy's parade exec in bid for younger audience

Her challenge is to get the whole organization behind the mission to entice more exciting entries to the parade and win a younger audience.

Survey ranks LA's parks 66th out of the the 100 biggest cities. Irvine is No. 10

When it comes to the quality of its parks, only one Southern California town made the top 10 of America’s 100 largest cities. And it wasn’t Los Angeles. The annual ranking is from The Trust for Public Land, a nonprofit group that advocates for more green spaces.

A dangerous Oxnard rail crossing is about to get a $69 million overpass, paid for by the new gas tax

After a Metrolink engineer was killed in Oxnard in a collision with a truck with years ago, politicians said they had no money to build an overpass. Now they do. Gov. Jerry Brown was there Tuesday to make sure everyone knew the money for the $69 million overpass was raised by California's new gas tax.

In the face of efforts to repeal California's gas tax, Gov. Brown leads the pushback

As a GOP-based effort to repeal hikes in gas and diesel taxes and vehicle fees gains ground, Gov. Jerry Brown and other officials launch a defense of the increases.

California is steadily losing groundwater

A new study of the globe's water says drought and farming are depleting California's groundwater, but new measures could help the state sustain its supply.

Broken pipes and limited gas storage: Why power outages might be more likely this summer

Southern California Gas Company doesn't know when outages on four major gas pipelines will be fixed, and as a result, we'll have less gas imported this summer, heightening the possibility of power outages.

Gov. Brown accused of behind-the-scenes manipulation in vote of water tunnel project

Two nonprofit groups are accusing Gov. Jerry Brown of improperly working with Metropolitan Water District board directors behind the scenes to put pressure on a key vote for a massive water tunnel project.

Porter Ranch gas leak cost approaches $1 billion

It includes what SoCal Gas spent housing thousands of families away from Porter Ranch while the leak was active, and a program to capture greenhouse gases equivalent to what got into the atmosphere from the broken gas well.

Cheaper gas or better roads? The battle over California's new gas tax

Government officials and construction interests who want to keep the gas tax face off against anti-tax activists to win the hearts and minds of California voters.

LA landowners face potential new property tax for rain capture

The proposed tax could raise $300 to $400 million per year to fund projects to capture more of the stormwater that falls on L.A. County and is lost to the sea.

AQMD panel wants safety measures, but no ban, to cope with hazardous refinery chemical

Air quality staffers had been working toward a ban, but the officials who govern the agency call for less stringent means of reducing the risk of a toxic chemical.

Why you may pay more in your power bill for damage from utility-caused fires

A bill pending in the State senate would make it easier for utilities to pass on to ratepayers the costs of wildfires their equipment cause.

Judge: SoCal Gas may do key study of its Aliso gas field despite potential conflict

Lacking another entity willing to do the study, a judge ordered SoCal Gas to evaluate its underground gas reservoir. The report will be overseen by independent experts.

Should Elon Musk's Westside tunnel get to skip environmental review? Some LA leaders think so

The region's transit agency worries The Boring Company's tunnel could interfere with its plans to build a subway under Sepulveda Boulevard.

Pacific Ocean methane burp could be source of Westside odor

Smell from Santa Monica to Venice to West L.A. could have come from decomposing seaweed or algae releasing methane as well as rotten-egg smelling sulphur compounds.