Gramercy picks newest mayor

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 21, 2004

By LEONARD GRAY – Managing Editor

GRAMERCY – The town of Gramercy has a new mayor-elect, with Herman Bourgeois edging Terry J. Borne for the seat in Saturday’s election.

Also on the Gramercy ballot, the 3.60-mills proposition to fund the town’s waterworks passed with 68 percent of the vote.

Both candidates were Democrats.

The differences in the mayor’s race came with Borne leading in Precinct 1-3, the results being 416 to 365, a 51-vote margin. At the same time, though, Bourgeois led in Precinct 1-2, the results being 194 to 109, an 83-vote margin.

Borne led 11-10 in absentee voting and 5-1 in Precinct 1-1. The final total was Bourgeois ahead, 570 to 541 votes, a margin of 29 votes.

The election was to fill the unexpired term of Eugene Louque, who resigned last year in the wake of a gambling scandal.

Louque was arrested on May 21 last year and charged with theft of funds and forgery from Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 5852, of which he was commander.

St. James Parish Sheriff Willy Martin Jr. said Louque’s motive was an addiction to gambling. An unspecified amount of money was reported taken from three separate accounts to which Doucet had access.

Louque confessed to the thefts when questioned by State Police, Martin said, and the mayor spent June 2003 in a Shreveport rehabilitation center for his gambling addiction.

Meanwhile, awaiting the outcome of the election, Mayor Pro-Tem John Doucet has filled the vacancy.

The 10-year property tax waterworks proposition met voter approval with a vote tally of 659 to 308 votes, or 68-32 percent of those voting.

The tax would expire in 2013, pending voter approval of a renewal.