The London Assembly will hold its annual meeting on Wednesday during which it will elect a Chair and Deputy Chair for the year ahead.
The post of Assembly Chair is a non-political role responsible for managing and facilitating Assembly business, similar to the House of Commons Speaker.
As in past years, the non-Conservative groups on the Assembly are expected to unite to share the posts between two of their Assembly Members. Labour AM and current Deputy Chair Jennette Arnold is tipped for the Chairmanship by non-Labour sources.
Disagreement over the allocation of the posts has caused bad feeling in previous years between the Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green bloc and City Hall Conservatives who form the largest single party group on the Assembly.
Conservative have previously complained that they have been ‘locked out’ of the two posts since Boris Johnson’s election in 2008 which have been held by a succession of Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green AMs.
Opponents dismiss the objections and say Conservative AMs already enjoy the patronage of the who has appointed a number of them to key posts including the Chairmanship of the Fire and Policing Authorities and waste board.
Liberal Democrat AMs also stress that they partnered with the Conservative group during Ken Livingstone’s second term to ensure the Assembly was chaired by an AM outside of the Mayor’s own party.
At Wednesday’s meeting Assembly Members will also establish committees for which they will agree the membership and Chairs.
The meeting marks the start of the final Assembly business year ahead of the 2012 Greater London Authority elections.
The meeting, which is open to the public, will be held Wednesday 4 May 2011, 10am in the Chamber at City Hall