The Dorset Waste Partnership (DWP) expects a £1.28m underspend in the current financial year.
According to the waste authority, this has been achieved by a lower cost household waste recycling centre (HWRC) contract (saving £302,000), reduced costs for processing recyclable materials, and additional income through garden and commercial waste subscribers (£306,000).
The underspend is in stark contrast to the DWP’s £2.8m deficit for the 2014-15 financial year, which resulted in former director Steve Burdis being fired. It managed to reverse this in 2015-16 with an underspend of more than £500,000.
In the latest figures, the authority expects to achieve £397,000 of efficiency savings through changes to its recycling services. The biggest portion of this, £166,667, is through route optimisation of the East Dorset and Christchurch collection round.
Recently introduced charges for DIY waste at its HWRCs is expected to save the council £131,250 by the end of the financial year and £74,000 worth of savings are predicted from discontinued recycling credit payments.
Tony Alford, chair of the DWP’s joint committee, said: “The DWP is continuing to deliver on its primary goals of increasing recycling rates, providing quality services and saving money for the Dorset taxpayer, despite the many challenges we face.
“Residents have shown that not only are they among the country’s keenest recyclers, they are overwhelmingly satisfied with the service we provide. Coupled with the good news that we’re able to save money for our partners, you can see how well the organisation is performing.”
For 2017-18, the authority predicts £1.149m in savings, despite an estimated drop in average recyclates price to £17.32 per tonne from £20 in the current year.
The largest proportion of the expected savings that year is £523,000 from the its HWRC contract.