The CoR holds 5 or 6 plenary sessions each year attended by all of its democratically elected 353 members coming from local and regional authorities from all 28 EU Member States. Normally chaired by the assembly's President – currently Ramón Luis Valcárcel Siso - the main purpose of the plenary sessions is to:
Within the European legislative process the European Commission is required to consult the CoR on policy areas that directly affect local and regional authorities. The relevant CoR policy commission will appoint one of its members to report and draft an opinion on the legislative proposal which is then put to the vote during one of the CoRs' plenary. If it receives a majority vote it is adopted and passed to the other EU institutions. The CoR may also proactively adopt a position on a particular issue through an own-initiative opinion.