AASHTO Journal, 22 December 2016
The incoming governor of Puerto Rico, Ricardo Rossello, has named engineer Carlos Contreras Aponte to be secretary of the Department of Transportation & Public Works and executive director of the Highways & Transportation Authority that is known as ACT, news services reported.
Rosello, who won the Nov. 8 gubernatorial election and takes office Jan. 2, announced the Contreras appointment in a Dec. 8 press conference, Caribbean Business reported.
The news story said Contreras, who is blind, was previously “head of ACT’s Traffic Engineering Office as well as assistant executive director of transit and highways. He was also the person in charge of supervising the modernization of toll technology on the island’s highway network.”
Contreras would follow current Secretary Miguel Torres Diaz, who had been the DTOP’s CEO since January 2013.
Fox News described him as “an accomplished engineer with vast experience in public office.”
“We are pleased that Contreras has accepted joining our administration and offer his expertise and commitment to public service. His designation sets a historic precedent because it is the first time that a blind person occupies the position of secretary at DTOP,” said Rossello, according to Caribbean Business.
The CB report also said Contreras told reporters that “my approach is that we should look outside the box. We need investment. We have made million-dollar investments but have not allocated any money for maintenance. That can be improved.”