DORSET County Council is ‘largely on track’ to achieve its savings targets this year, cabinet members have been told.

The council is also taking steps to look at how the authority can prepare itself for further cuts in the future.

Chief executive David Jenkins told a meeting of the cabinet that of 42 projects put into place in a bid to save £15million this financial year, only one had been flagged up as being unlikely to be achieved. He said: “So far as the programme this year is concerned, we are largely on track.”

Members were warned that the council still needs to find a further £24million in savings over the period up to March 2015, of which £18million was yet to be identified, and faced at least two further years of funding reductions beyond that.

The council is now in the process of setting up four ‘challenge groups’ that will look at ways the council can make itself more resilient to future cuts in funding.

Council leader Angus Campbell , pictured, said: “We have been doing an awful lot of saving and innovation but there is a lot more we have to do.

“Things will not be the same as they have been in the past.”

Chief financial officer Paul Kent told members that one of the most significant changes would be local authorities retaining a proportion of business rates collected locally, which are currently passed onto central government, in place of existing grants.