Democracy demands a forward plan from the Mayor
The Assembly today voted unanimously for my motion to improve transparency and democratic scrutiny in Mayor’s decisions.
The role of the London Assembly is to hold the Mayor of London to account by publicly examining policies and programmes on behalf of Londoners.
With multi-billion-pound budgets and programmes covering many essential services, the work of the GLA and its functional bodies is vast and complex. Local authorities are required to produce and maintain a forward plan of key decisions and Transport for London also does this, but not the Mayor.
The Assembly today voted for my motion calling on the Mayor to exceed statutory requirements and do the same in the aid of transparency, effective scrutiny and the best use of resources.
Too often the Mayor’s decisions come without warning and it is not right that we are unable to carry out our duty to scrutinise the Mayor’s work until it is too late to make changes.
All London councils publish forward plans as a statutory requirement, so it does not make sense that the Mayor of London, who oversees a multi-billion pound budget, will not offer us the same transparency.
The Mayor needs to be open and clear with Londoners about decisions that will directly affect their lives and the Assembly is right to ask for this information. I hope the Mayor will agree and routinely publish a forward plan of his decisions and consultations in future.
Caroline Pidgeon AM seconded the motion from the Liberal Democrats, and it was great to see both the Labour and Conservative parties signing up to this too.
The full text of the motion is:
This Assembly exists to hold the Mayor and Mayoral advisers to account by publicly examining policies and programmes on behalf of Londoners.
With multi-billion-pound budgets, and programmes covering many of London’s essential services, the workstreams of the GLA and its five functional bodies are vast and complex.
This Assembly notes that under Part III additional requirements in respect of key decisions and public meetings of The Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2000, local authorities are required to produce and maintain a public forward plan of key decisions.
This Assembly also notes that the Transport for London (TfL) Board and its Committees and Panels also produce forward plans. Forward plans list upcoming decisions and consultations, to aid transparency, effective scrutiny and best use of resources.
We call on the Mayor to exceed the statutory requirements of his office and publish a similar forward plan.