A new London Assembly report has called for major changes to the rules for counting votes in elections for Mayor of London.
The law currently limits recounts of votes to individual London Assembly constituencies, the report says this should be changed to allow a London-wide re-count in the event of a close Mayoral result.
It also recommends reviewing the costs and benefits of reducing the number of count centres from three to two.
Assembly Members warn that delays at one count centre damaged London’s reputation by pushing back the final declarations for the Mayor and London wide Assembly Member elections until midnight.
Publishing the report Len Duvall, Chair of the GLA Oversight Committee, said: “Public confidence in our electoral process is vital. After the mini-shambles of the 2010 general election with some voters unable to cast their ballots, the delays and confusion on the night of the count surrounding results from Alexandra Palace had the potential to undermine that confidence.
“In the event of a very tight race that confidence would certainly be damaged if the Greater London Returning Officer’s hands were tied and they could not order a re-count. Given that there was only a three percent margin in the 2012 mayoral result, this issue must be addressed by government before 2016.
“We do not underestimate the complexity of delivering and counting an election involving more than two million people using three different ballot papers each with a different method of voting. However, the lessons set out in our report can and must be learnt to ensure a robust and efficient delivery of the 2016 GLA poll.”