After interviewing at least five applicants for the interim job of city manager, the Van Alstyne City Council has narrowed the field down to a finalist applicant.


The council met in a special meeting Monday night, Jan. 29, to complete their interviewing, which was done in executive session. There, they also discussed the pending contract with Sharif M. Alshawish and the John Houx Estate for five lots of property on East Cooper Street.


Council member and spokesperson Lee Thomas said that, after they returned to open session, the first order of business was to progress further in finding the right person to act as interim city manager. Council members Suzon Crowell and Brad Clough made and seconded a motion to have Thomas negotiate with the finalist. Thomas said he will be contacting that person to negotiate terms and bring the terms they settle on back to the council.


Next, was a motion to approve council member Teddie Ann Salmon, who also serves as Mayor Pro Tem, to sign the real estate contract with wording changes on the property. The property sets in the same block as the city’s Public Works Department and water tower. That was approved with a vote of 3-1. Thomas said it was Salmon, Crowell, and council member Robert Jaska who voted in favor; council member Brad Clough abstained, and he (Thomas) voted against it.


And finally, the council voted unanimously to begin recording the executive sessions “per municipal law,” Thomas said. The motion, made by Salmon and seconded by Jaska, was to tape record them, but Thomas said Crowell asked for an amendment to simply ‘record’ them and that would allow them and future councils to use technological advances. These recordings will be sealed and stored in the city’s vault, only to be opened again by court order.


The Van Alstyne City Council open meetings are again being video-recorded and can be seen on YouTube.com, City of Van Alstyne.