A NUMBER of contracts have been approved by Dorset Council – the largest being £42m for children’s home placements over a seven-year period.

In total the value of 11 contracts approved this week amounts to almost £100m over a period of between 4 and seven years.

Among the contracts on the list are £800,000 for rock salt; £11.2m for vehicle and heating fuel and oil; £1m for vehicle tyres; £7m for vehicle parts and ‘associated services’ and £10m for road treatments.

The list of around a dozen items came before Dorset Cabinet this week for approval because each is above the £500,000 threshold.

Council rules say that all spending above £500,000 needs Cabinet approval although there are rare exceptions where it is not possible to do this.

An example included the recent purchase of community asymptomatic lateral flow testing kits in response to instructions from the Department of Health and Social Care where there was not enough time to bring a report for approval as the testing had to be in place by mid-February.