The Essential Role of the London Assembly in Local Government

The Greater London Authority (GLA) is responsible for managing the 607 square miles and 8.5 million population of London. Led by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and the London Assembly, it provides the broadest strategic direction for the capital and its policies cover the 32 boroughs and the City of London. The London Assembly is an elected body of 25 members, part of the GLA, which oversees the activities of the Mayor of London and has the power to modify the mayor's annual budget and reject the mayor's draft statutory strategies. The Assembly holds the mayor and mayoral advisors accountable by publicly reviewing policies and programs through committee meetings, plenary sessions, on-site visits, and investigations.

The mayor must respond to formal motions and recommendations of the Assembly. It plays a very important role in promoting and developing London as one of the world's leading business and trade centers, and its responsibilities go beyond its borders. The GLA is responsible for repairing and maintaining 95% of London's roads, monitoring parking, providing free bus, tube and train travel for 1 million older and disabled Londoners, owning and maintaining nearly half a million homes, managing libraries, processing planning requests, collecting waste and licensing bars, clubs and restaurants in the capital. The City of London has about 8,000 residents, 513,000 people who commute to work every day, and 10 million annual visitors. Transport for London (TfL) was created in 2000 and is responsible for managing London's transport services, including the Tube network, London buses and the Docklands light rail.

The Mayor sets an annual budget for the GLA and for the GLA Group, which includes TfL, the Metropolitan Police and the London Fire Department. The Mayor's Office for Policing And Crime (MOPAC) clarifies this process and accountability and gives Londoners a greater say in how their city is controlled. The partisan political balance of the London Assembly and of the members of the city councils must reflect the partisan political balance of the Assembly and of all London districts. The 32 municipalities of London and the City of London provide most everyday services to their local residents, including education, housing, social services, environmental services, local planning, and many arts and leisure services. The LGA leads on national issues affecting local government while London councils concentrate on those that are of particular relevance to London. It is clear that the role of the London Assembly in local government is essential. It holds the mayor accountable by publicly reviewing policies and programs through committee meetings, plenary sessions, on-site visits, investigations as well as promoting London as one of the world's leading business centers.

Furthermore, it ensures that there is a balance between partisan politics in both the Assembly itself as well as in all city councils. In summary, it is evident that without a doubt that this body plays an integral role in governing London. It provides oversight to ensure that policies are being implemented correctly while also providing a platform for citizens to have their voices heard.