London Assembly elects Jennette Arnold as Chair

Jennette Arnold has been re-elected Chair of the London Assembly
The London Assembly has elected Labour’s Jennette Arnold as its new Chair for the coming year.

Assembly Members also elected Green Party AM Darren Johnson as Deputy Chair.

Both AMs held the positions during some of the previous City Hall term.

Arnold said she was “honoured to be serving a third term as Chair of the London Assembly” and thanked colleagues for their “confidence”.

She added: “We have just fought a robust election but now is the time for all Assembly Members to join together as we work to improve the quality of life in London across the full scope of the Greater London Authority’s responsibilities.
“The Mayor has significant new powers to address regeneration and housing need in the Capital. The Assembly will be watching closely to see that he delivers on his election promises to Londoners, and does so in an efficient and effective manner.”

The elections follow a deal between the Labour, Green and Liberal Democrat groups on the Assembly to share the majority of posts, including the Chairs and Deputy Chairs of committees, between them.

Similar agreements have existed since the Assembly was formed in 2000.

During Ken Livingstone’s second term Conservatives and LibDem AMs blocked Labour members from holding the major posts.

The three groups have defended their agreement as a counter-balance to the jobs Mayor Boris Johnson has given Tory AMs including the Chairmanship of LFEPA to James Cleverly and Kit Malthouse’s appointment as deputy mayor for Business.

Len Duvall AM said: “The Labour, Liberal Democrat, and Green groups have agreed to work together to scrutinise the Conservative Mayor of London, Boris Johnson.”

Green Party AM Jenny Jones added: “The Assembly is elected by Londoners to hold the Mayor to account and the most effective way of doing that is by including all party groups in operational arrangements while also ensuring the Mayor is fully held to account with the non-mayoral parties taking the lead.”

During Friday’s meeting Conservative group leader Andrew Boff AM said the deal “disenfranchised the 700,000 Londoners who voted Conservative” in last week’s election.

The meeting also elected the following Chairs and deputies to the Assembly’s scrutiny committees:

Audit Panel (4 Members)
Chair: John Biggs AM
Deputy Chair: Roger Evans AM
Budget and Performance Committee (9 Members)
Chair: John Biggs AM   
Deputy Chair: Stephen Knight AM
Confirmation Hearings Committee (9 Members)
Chair and Deputy Chair to be appointed at meetings.
Economy Committee (9 Members)
Chair: Andrew Dismore AM
Deputy Chair: Stephen Knight AM
GLA Oversight Committee (9 Members)
Chair: Len Duvall AM
Deputy Chair: Jennette Arnold AM
Health and Environment Committee (9 Members)
Chair: Murad Qureshi AM
Deputy Chair: Jenny Jones AM
Housing and Regeneration Committee (12 Members)
Chair: Len Duvall AM
Deputy Chair: Darren Johnson AM
Planning Committee (9 Members)
Chair: Nicky Gavron AM
Deputy Chair: to be elected at first meeting
Police and Crime Committee (12 Members)
Chair: Joanne McCartney AM
Deputy Chair: Caroline Pidgeon AM
Deputy Chair: Jenny Jones AM
Standards Committee (5, plus 6 independent Members)
Chair and Deputy Chair to be elected at first meeting.
Transport Committee (12 Members)
Chair: Caroline Pidgeon AM
Deputy Chair: Val Shawcross AM


  1. Andrew Paul Bowden says

    Dear Andrew Boff – the Mayor of London and his band of Conservative leaning Deputy Mayors disenfranchises the 48.5% of people who did not vote Conservative. Hope that helps balance things up a little for you.

  2. Andrew Boff says

    Just for the record – if Livingstone had been elected I would have argued that all groups be included in the scrutiny of the Mayor as is the case of select Committees in the Commons. It is a shame that the Assembly has excluded 700,000 Londoners from a full role in the Assembly. It rather reveals the authoritarian tendencies of Jenny Jones and Caroline Pigeon.

  3. Andrew Boff says

    Mr Bowden, The mayoralty is an executive position and the formation of an executive is therefore entirely proper based upon the outcome of the election – that is what Londoners voted for.
    The Assembly is a scrutiny body and provides a voice for all Londoners to hold that executive to account. The arrangement cuts out the elected members of 700,000 voters from taking a full role in the scrutiny of the Mayor. The inference in the agreement that cash will change hands in order to secure the votes for this arrangement
    “Therefore the Labour group will support resources being allocated to the smaller groups that provide adequate and appropriate resources to support Group management and overheads.”
    requires further investigation.