Business owners file complaints against Van Alstyne city manager

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VAN ALSTYNE, Tex. (KXII) - Business owners in Van Alstyne say they're fed up with the city manager and aired their grievances at a city council meeting Tuesday night.

Gerry Shehan owns Van Alstyne Medical Clinic along US Highway 75. He says his problems with city manager Frank Baker began after he moved to a different building about three weeks ago.

"There is no welcoming packet for new businesses that move into Van Alstyne," Shehan said. "So its kind of a trial and error when you apply for permitting and try to find the city ordinances."

Shehan says he went to the city to get the appropriate permits, city officials told him he had the wrong occupancy permit. He says when he tried to fix the problem, he didn't get much help.

"Mr. Baker was adversarial, hostile, and didn't take any constructive criticism whatsoever," Shehan said.

Shehan says he suggested Baker make a checklist to make the process easier for business owners. He tells us he has filed a complaint against Baker with the city.

Tiffany Clum is the owner of Upholstery Girl in Van Alstyne and is also running for city council in the upcoming municipal election. Clum tells us she has submitted a complaint to the city in which she claims Baker lacks customer service skills and has a defensive manner and tone.

But new business owner Kristy Bryant says she's only had positive experiences with both the city and Baker.

"I think they did a great job," Bryant said. "Even the city was very proactive for me."

Both Baker and Mayor Larry Cooper declined to comment at the meeting Tuesday night.

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