Susan is the deputy news director who handles assignments and planning by the news staff. She's also a general assignment reporter who began her career at MPBN working at the State House in 1992. Since then she has covered major political and environmental stories, winning national awards for her beat reporting twice from the Society for Environmental Journalists. Her coverage of labor issues, including an investigative series on independent contractors, has also been recognized by the Public Radio News Directors, Inc and by the Associated Press. Susan is a graduate of the University of Montana where she got her first job in public radio news while still a student.

Shots - Health News
5:13 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Risks Of Popular Anxiety Drugs Often Overshadowed

Xanax and Valium, prescribed to treat anxiety, mood disorders and insomnia, can be deadly when mixed with other sedatives.
Dean812 Flickr

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 5:40 pm

When actor Philip Seymour Hoffman died of an overdose in February, the New York City medical examiner ruled that his death was the result of "acute mixed drug intoxication." Heroin, cocaine and a widely prescribed class of drugs known as benzodiazepines, or benzos, were found in his system.

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Economy
4:16 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Sending Money On An Overseas Round Trip To Avoid Taxes

Round-tripping occurs when American citizens open bank accounts in tax havens such as the Cayman Islands, funnel money into the accounts and then use it to buy stocks and bonds back in the U.S.
David McFadden AP

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 5:03 pm

Some investors avoid paying taxes in a move called round-tripping — sending money offshore, then investing it in U.S. stocks or bonds. A study estimates it costs the U.S. billions in lost revenues.

Recently, MIT professor Michelle Hanlon and two colleagues set out to find out all they could about round-tripping.

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NPR Story
3:56 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

In Portugal, A Sales Receipt May Be Your Ticket To Win Big

A customer pays a vendor for her purchases at Feira da Ladra flea market in Lisbon, Portugal, in October 2013. The government has introduced a "Lucky Receipts" lottery to encourage people to ask for receipts — which will automatically be entered into a national lottery for fancy new cars. It's an effort to curb tax evasion and raise revenue.
Mario Proenca Bloomberg via Getty Images

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:51 pm

On Lisbon's cobblestone lanes, the Portuguese economy is hobbling along as it always has — in cash.

In a tiny, 100-year-old bar, Nuno Goncalves pours out glasses of ginja — a Portuguese sweet cherry liqueur — for his customers, mostly old men in flat caps. A small shot-glass full costs 50 cents — cash only. There is a cash register, but it doesn't print receipts.

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Music Interviews
3:15 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Perennial Co-Writer Returns With An Album Of His Own

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:29 pm

Dan Wilson is your favorite songwriter's favorite co-writer, lending a pen to artists from Nas to Adele. But he also writes music for himself — and he joins the program to talk more about it.

Around the Nation
3:15 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Months Of Training And A Moment Of Silence As Marathon Draws Near

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:29 pm

Even as Boston pays tribute to the victims of the marathon bombing, runners are preparing to run in the race next week. NPR is following the stories of eight of these participants, dubbed the "NPR 8."

Around the Nation
3:15 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

The Long Wait On Safety Rules For The 'Soda Can' Of Rail Cars

Safety advocates have been pressuring Canadian and U.S. officials to create new safety standards for tank cars and to make old DOT-111s like this one more puncture-resistant.
Nati Harnik AP

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:29 pm

Freight trains roll through the Chicago suburb of Barrington, Ill., every day, many pulling older tank cars known as DOT-111s. They're known as the "soda can" of rail cars, says village President Karen Darch, because their shells are so thin.

Many of the DOT-111s are full of heavy Canadian tar sands crude oil. Some carry ethanol. And more and more of them are loaded with light Bakken crude oil from North Dakota.

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News
3:15 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Boston Mourns A Tragic Anniversary With Voices Of Victims

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:29 pm

One year has passed since bombs rocked the finish line of the Boston Marathon. The city honored victims of the tragedy Tuesday with a tribute, including speeches from three of the victims themselves.

Technology
3:15 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Between Heartbleed And Homeland, NSA Treads Cybersecurity Gray Area

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:29 pm

Amid controversy over the Heartbleed security bug, the White House clarified how U.S. intelligence agencies must handle such bugs. Bloomberg Businessweek cybersecurity reporter Michael Riley explains.

Around the Nation
3:15 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

Yearly Homecoming Makes For A Springtime Fish Frenzy

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 4:29 pm

Transcript

AUDIE CORNISH, HOST:

The American shad lives most of its life at sea except for a few weeks in early spring, when it swims upstream into rivers to spawn. That's precisely what fishermen in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania have been waiting for.

As NPR's Joel Rose reports, the shad's annual return to the Delaware River is a springtime tradition that goes back centuries.

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