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Fulshear city manager on leave: Jack Harper’s future in Fort Bend County town in jeopardy after multiple complaints against him

FULSHEAR, Texas (KTRK) — What started as one complaint ballooned into a four-hour-long meeting of complaints that may cost the Fulshear city manager his job.

Outside of city hall, stapled in a glass case, sits a special council agenda that could impact Fulshear’s future.

“I wouldn’t say this is any more important than any of our other meetings, but at the same time, I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge the fact that it’s a pivotal point in the city,” Fulshear Mayor Aaron Groff said.

On Monday evening, council will meet to discuss the future of its city manager. Jack Harper started as Fulshear’s manager nearly six years ago, a time that could be winding down after the council put him on paid leave last week.

During last week’s meeting, Groff had a message.

“Retaliation of any sort will not be tolerated when a member of staff or public brings a complaint to the city,” Groff said.

Groff added that the city manager isn’t accused of retaliation. Instead, he said those who come forward shouldn’t fear repercussions.

A lot of people have come forward. It started a week and a half ago with a staff member’s complaint.

Days later, during a special council meeting, leaders met for four hours and heard several other complaints.

“It came as a surprise to everybody in the room,” Groff recalled. “None of us saw it coming at this point.”

Leaders said the complaints haven’t prompted a criminal investigation. As to precisely what they’re about, leaders have yet to say so far.

“We can’t speak about what happens in executive session unless that were to go to a public hearing or a public investigation,” Groff said. “Then, we would take those next steps if we need to.”

Monday’s meeting is at city hall at 5:30 p.m. Council could reinstate Harper, punish him further, or fire him. ABC13 reached out to Harper’s work email but has yet to get a response.

If the council removes Harper, a 60-day search will start for his replacement. Currently, the assistant city manager is serving in his role.

For updates on this story, follow Nick Natario on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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https://abc13.com/fulshear-texas-city-manager-complaints-mayor-aaron-groff-jack-harper-where-is-tx/14416202/

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