The Dept. of Transportation has named Richard Capka as deputy administrator for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), an appointment that could generate some controversy.

Before assuming his FHWA post, Capka served as executive director & CEO of the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority, where he directed oversight of the $14.5-billion Central Artery/Tunnel project in Boston. However, his contract was terminated in June because of massive cost overruns at the "Big Dig" project and for signing lucrative pay and severance packages for several lawyers working on the project.

A former Brigadier General with more than 29 years of experience in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Capka will be responsible at FHWA for shaping the reauthorization next year of the Transportation Equity Act (TEA-21), which funds highway maintenance and construction.