Sulphur Mayor Ron LeLeux prepares to leave office

by Brandon Richards bio | email

SULPHUR, LA (KPLC-TV) – Monday marked Sulphur Mayor Ron LeLeux's final full day in office. Mayor-Elect Chris Duncan takes office on Tuesday.

Mayor LeLeux said he was feeling a range of emotions Monday, as he packed up his office at city hall.

"I think there's every emotion in the book," said LeLeux. "This was always a dream of mine to be the mayor of our great city and I was blessed for eight years to do that."

LeLeux's defeat by Duncan is considered a major political upset as many local media pundits had predicted a third term for LeLeux. LeLeux said there are many reasons the results were the way they were, low voter turnout being one of them.

LeLeux said he was focused on the future, but was also satisfied with his legacy as mayor.

"We took a city that was on its knees after Hurricane Rita and brought it back very quickly," said LeLeux. "I think you can drive around the city and see a lot of things we've done over the last eight years that have made it a better city, a more attractive city."

While LeLeux was packing his things up, across town Duncan was preparing for his big day.

Duncan said considering he was an underdog in the election, it is still hard to believe he is hours away from becoming mayor of Sulphur.

"I guess it'll hit me after I am sworn in that I am officially the mayor of Sulphur," said Duncan.

After he takes office on Tuesday, Duncan said he will get right to work, holding meetings with members of his administration.

"My top priority is getting my department heads set up," said Duncan.

The swearing-in ceremony marks the end of what was a bitter and heated campaign. Allegations of distortions, sign stealing and outright lies came from both campaigns.

Perhaps the most public and prime example of what many have pointed to as negative campaigning comes from a website run by retiring city council woman Nancy Tower, a Chris Duncan supporter. Tower's website contains documents and statements about LeLeux's record as mayor.

"That was her own personal website," said Duncan. "Everything that she did it on, we did not allow any of that to be placed on our personal website."

Duncan will be sworn in, along with members of the city council, Tuesday at noon at the Sulphur Judicial Center, located at 802 South Huntington Street.

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