Welsh AssemblyThe National Assembly for Wales (known in Welsh as Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru) was established in 1997, following a referendum in which a small majority of voters (but not the electorate) voted in favour of the Labour Government's plans for devolution.
Unlike the Scottish Parliament and Northern Ireland Assembly, the National Assembly for Wales cannot pass its own primary legislation, nor can it raise its own taxes, as these powers remain with Westminster. This is because unlike those other parts of the UK, Wales has had the same legal and administrative system as England. However, supporters of the Assembly argue that it is more democratically accountable than the Welsh Office, which was represented in the British Cabinet by a Secretary of State who often did not even represent a Welsh constituency at Westminster.
The Assembly is composed of 60 Assembly Members, knowns as AMs. Under a system of proportional representation, 40 of the AMs are elected from single-member constituencies on a First Past the Post basis, the constituencies being equivalent to those used for the House of Commons, while the remaining 20 AMs are elected on regional lists, in order to achieve a proportional result overall.
There have thus far been two elections to the Assembly, the first taking place in 1999 and the second in 2003. The second election produced the first legislature in which 50 per cent of its members were women.
The First Minister and his Cabinet form the Welsh Assembly Government.
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|Table of contents|
2 Constituency Members
3 Regional Members
3.1 Mid and West Wales4 See also
3.2 North Wales
3.3 South Wales Central
3.4 South Wales East
3.5 South Wales West
5 External links
Members as from May 2003:
Mid and West Wales
South Wales Central
South Wales East
South Wales West