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Council cuts protest (with some Valentines romance)

The union protestors asking councillors to sign their card Credit: ITV News/Duncan Sleighthome

Unions in Dorset are asking councillors to sign a Valentine's card today, in protest at ongoing cuts to budgets and services. The County Council warns than it will need to find at least £46m worth of savings in the next three years. This follows around £43m of savings made in the last two years.

The card has so far attracted few signatures Credit: ITV News/Duncan Sleightholme

Of the £46m, £19.5m of cuts are proposed for the forthcoming financial year, 2013-2014. All departments will be affected but the biggest cuts will be to adult social care, children's supported services and the Dorset Road Safety Partnership which operates things like speed cameras.

Councillors are debating the cuts today.

Dorset Council 'needs to save £46 million in 3 years'

The debate over the proposed cuts has just begun. The councils says it needs to cut £46 million over three years. Out of that, it has identified £19.5 million to cut in the coming tax year of 2013 - 2014.

The cuts will be made in all departments, but if the plans are approved, road safety, adult services, and children's support services will face the largest cuts.

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Vote on £11 million of cuts to council budget

£11 million worth of cuts is proposed Credit: ITV News West Country

Councillors in Dorset will vote today on whether to make cuts of £11 million to the county's budget. Protesters gathered at the weekend to urge the council not to go ahead with the proposals. It's the first of a three year plan to ultimately shave £40 million from the budget.

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Union representatives give speeches at march

Protesters assemble to hear speeches from Union representatives Credit: ITV News West Country

On Thursday [14th] Dorset County Councillors will be voting on whether to cut a further £11 million pounds from their budget during 2013/14.

The Trades Council has organised a public a march from Poundbury to the new council offices at West Dorset District Council, protesting against the cuts.

Beaminster tunnel unlikely to open for several months

The Beaminster Tunnel in Dorset is unlikely to be re-opened for several months.

It was closed earlier this month after a landslip that killed two people.

The tunnel was closed earlier this month after a landslip that killed two people. Credit: Emma Hallett/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Engineers have found that the slope at both ends of the tunnel is extremely dangerous and liable to further collapses. Dorset County Council has brought in experts to find the best way forward.

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