LOWELL -- A Lowell City Council public hearing on a proposal to change the panhandling ordinance to enable police to crack down on aggressive panhandlers was scheduled for Nov. 12 at 7 p.m.

The proposed ordinance change comes after some in the city have complained about aggressive tactics employed by panhandlers at some locations around the city.

Assistant City Manager Adam Baacke also announced Tuesday Lowell Memorial Auditorium has chosen a company to provide food and drinks to auditorium guests, hiring a company formed as a joint venture between Lenzi's Catering Services, of Dracut, and RTJ Concessions, of Tyngsboro.

Both companies have a long history in the area, and will team up to run concession stands in the auditorium.

Councilor Rita Mercier questioned whether those holding events at the auditorium will still be able to hire their own caterers if they choose, and Baacke said that will be allowed, though only the official concessions operators will be able to serve liquor since only one firm can be listed on a liquor license.

The council also approved the following motions:

* Request from Councilor Rodney Elliott that city manager provide a report regarding the use of police informants.

* Request from Mayor Patrick Murphy that city manager report on plants for City Hall renovation as site for archival research and current public policy research and development.


* Request from Murphy that city manager review historic district guidelines and work with Historic Board to initiate wider public discussion of appropriate flexibility for an evolving an innovative city.

* Request from Murphy that city clerk report on progress on goals and objectives, and potential for making office for enterprising, in partnering with historic administrators on genealogical packages, improving online presence, etc.

* Request from Murphy that city auditor report on progress developing procedures to track disposed or transferred fixed city assets.

* Request from Murphy that city manager provide overview of process for oversight of compliance with special permit conditions and develop plan for greater compliance in future.

* Request from Murphy that city manager consider conducting staff survey in conjunction with the staffing study to obtain feedback not only about how the city might be fun more effectively but also how it might continually recruit, develop and retain a talented group of workers.

* Request from Murphy that auditor report on 2010 outside audit recommendations for internal audit function in the context of the next staffing study by the administration.

* Request from Murphy that city manager provide analysis of school and municipal human resource departments, and potential adoption of MGL 71, section 37M allowing for the consolidation of administrative functions within a city.

* Request from Murphy that city manager prepare application to Sustainable Cities Design Academy for planning staff professional development and continued work on ecodistrict project.

* Request from Murphy that city manager develop application for community innovation challenge grant to work with state to initiate ecodistrict program here and provide model for other communities in the state of increased citizen involvement, interdepartmental collaboration and innovation and government performance.

* Request from Murphy that city manager conduct and map analysis of land uses on city's waterfront (rivers, canals, brooks) and identify specifically which parcels are city-owned and open for public use.

* Request from Murphy that city manager report on prior plan to improve the E.N. Rogers School campus with investment in stormwater management.

* Request from Murphy that city manager develop and implement plan to partially restore tree canopy to Newhall Street with staggered bump-outs on both sides of the street where feasible.

* Request from Murphy that city manager report on the status of the Coal Pocket building at 246 Market St., and potential for feasibility study of a municipal renovation and reuse. 

* Request from Murphy that manager draft zoning change to reduce minimum parking requirements or create maximum parking requirements in applicable areas served by public transit and strong pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure.

* Request from Murphy that city manager examine use of parking enterprise capital funds for investment in maintaining and strengthening pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure in the downtown and neighborhood business districts.

* Request from Murphy that city manager report on potential for bike station downtown in vacant storefront both to gauge demand for public amenity and to possibly increase traffic for private investment.

* Request from Murphy that city manager name bus shelter to be constructed in front of Lowell Senior Center in honor of George B. Murphy, Jr.

* Request from Murphy that city manager have the Law Department draft Wage Theft Ordinance to protect lower-wage workers in our community.

* Request from Murphy that City Council adopt resolution in support of the Earned Pay Sick Time Act in order to provide minimum protections for often lower-income, private-sector workers now more than afforded to those in city government.