BOSSES at Sedgemoor District Council have voted to use contingency funds to scrutinise plans for a new nuclear plant at Hinkley Point.

The authority had been locked in a row with site operator EDF Energy over how a study of the power plant application should be funded.

A special meeting of the council last week heard how the authority has received £272,000 from EDF for the work this year.

But finance chief Claire Pearce told councillors the amount was ‘significantly short’ of that required to properly examine the application.

It is understood the council was hoping for £2million.

Councillors resolved to write to the Infrastructure Planning Commission, which is examining the application, informing it of the council’s lack of funding and requesting extra help with legal costs.

On Tuesday, the council voted unanimously to use contingency funds of up to £250,000 to cover the shortfall.

Council leader Duncan McGinty said: “It is with great regret we find ourselves in this position.”

Responding to claims they had not contributed enough money, EDF spokesman Gordon Bell said: “EDF has voluntarily committed £272,000 to cover the reasonable costs of the council.

“This is in addition to £870,000 already provided to help Sedgemoor, West Somerset Council and Somerset County Council complete reports to the IPC by May 3.

“Sedgemoor has rece-ived almost £10million, which represents almost two thirds of the council's annual budget.”