DORSET County Council is set to consider an increase of 1.99 per cent for its part of next year's council tax.

The increase, the first in four years, will be discussed and decided upon at the full council meeting next Thursday.

This is a rise of 44p per week for a band D property, a total of £22.88 a year.

Cllr Robert Gould, Cabinet member for corporate resources, said: “I am confident that the basis for the budget is sound and that it will support the council for the substantial challenges that we face in the future.

“This is a modest increase to help us change the way we serve our residents.”

The Cabinet also recommended that the budget strategy is considered by the full council in February. This plan lays out the savings that need to be made in the next three financial years (£43.3m).

Cllr Spencer Flower, leader of the county council, said: “There are a lot of unknowns in the next few years. But we do know that we need to change the way we provide services to the residents of Dorset. By transforming rather than cutting services and with good financial management we will meet the challenges head on.”