Changing the name of Sugarland Parkway to Judge Edward Dufresne Parkway will have little effect on the school system or the Sheriff’s Office, which both have facilities located on the street.
The Parish Council agreed to change the name of the Luling road to honor the late Judge Edward A. Dufresne Jr., who passed away in December. Dufresne made many contributions to the parish over the years. He donated 35 acres of land to the parish that was used to build the new Sheriff’s Office complex and will also be used for the new community center, which will be named after Dufresne’s father.
He also donated portions of his properties on Sugarland Parkway to the parish school district, including parts of land that house R.K. Smith Middle School, the central office, the Satellite Center and the school maintenance facility.
Rochelle Cancienne-Touchard, the director of public information for the school district, said the addresses of all school property on the road will be changed online immediately. Stationery, which was recently received for R.K. Smith Middle, the Satellite Center and the school maintenance facility, will be used until it runs out.
“Then we will order new stationery with the new address,” she said. “The name change is a wonderful thing and this is a great way of commending Judge Dufresne.”
Sheriff Greg Champagne said that his office had not ordered any stationery for the new crime-fighting complex, so that the road name change should come at little or no cost.
“I was in total support of the name change,” he said. “We were given a heads up by Councilman (Billy) Raymond on it. Since we get our mail through the P.O. box, we didn’t have a stationery problem.”
And even if changing the name of the road had caused the Sheriff’s Office to incur additional costs, Champagne said it would be nowhere near the amount of money taxpayers were saved by Dufresne’s donation.
“The donation of this land has saved the taxpayers millions,” he said. “Just the property that my office now sits on was easily worth over $1 million.”
Dufresne, 72, was working at his office, Jackie Bee Corp, when he collapsed from what was believed to have been a massive heart attack on Dec. 7.
Dufresne served as Clerk of Court and District Judge in St. Charles Parish before being elected as Chief Judge of the Louisiana 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in 2001.