A CONSULTATION has been launched into proposals which could see the number of AMs in Wales increased to as many as 90.

The proposals included as part of an independent report launched last year also suggested allowing 16 and 17-year-olds to vote in Assembly elections, and cutting the 40 constituencies in Wales in half.

If the proposals are taken forward, Newport East and West would be merged, as would Monmouth and Torfaen and Blaenau Gwent and Islwyn, while Caerphilly would merge with Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney.

Each would be represented by either four or five AMs, except for Blaenau Gwent and Islwyn, which would be represented by four.

Presiding officer Elin Jones AM said: “The Wales Act 2017 marks the start of a new phase of devolution in Wales, giving us the opportunity to make profound changes to our legislature.

"We now have the opportunity to forge the national parliament that the people of Wales deserve to champion their interests.

"This consultation is the beginning of a conversation with the people and communities of Wales about the institution that they want their Welsh Parliament to be.

"I look forward to hearing their views.”

The consultation will run until Friday, April 6.

Take part at assembly.wales/futuresenedd or futuresenedd.wales