FORMER Ripon Labor Candidate Sarah De Santis has said her party was "absolutely" right to dispute the result of the state election in Ripon.
The comment came the day after after the Victorian Labor party withdrew its petition to the Court of Disputed Returns on Monday.
The case was heard in court Monday morning before being adjourned until Tuesday, but Labor Assistant State Secretary Kosmos Samaras said a settlement was reached outside of court Monday afternoon.
Labor challenged the result of the Ripon electorate from last year's state election, with incumbent MP Louise Staley holding her seat by just 15 votes against Labor candidate Sarah De Santis.
Initially, Ms De Santis was shown to be ahead by 31 votes when Ms Staley requested a recount, resulting in her 15 vote lead and prompting Labor to lodge an appeal to the courts.
"Unfortunately court cases are expensive and the money you put into it, and the outcome you're likely to get is a formula you need to take into consideration," Ms De Santis said.
"Obviously the Australian Labor Party has done that."
When asked who would foot the bill for the court proceedings, Mr Samaras declined to comment.
Despite the outcome, Ms De Santis said the Labor party had done the right thing.
"There are certain abnormalities that were brought to light, and at the end of the day I just think court cases are always expensive, and there is always a risk," she said.
"Unfortunately once we had gone through all the documentation, the risks outweighed the probability of success."
READ MORE: LOUISE STALEY CLAIMS RIPON VICTORY
Ms Staley said the Labor party had the right to pursue the petition but she was "pleased it was all over."
"Under the legislation they had the right to bring this action, and as recently as two weeks ago they were telling the court that they were going to take four days for the hearing," she said.
"So they were very invested in it. But as Kosmos Samaras of the ALP has said, they reviewed their case and came to the conclusion that they weren't going to win."
Ms Staley said the dispute had had minimal impact on her role as the Member for Ripon.
"I've just got on with the job," she said.
"It's true that a lot of people have asked me about it every day because it's unusual; they didn't know the process and they would ask me what was happening with it.
"Other than that, I just kept doing my job."
Ms De Santis said now she will "just keep working", albeit in a less official capacity.
"I'm no longer the candidate for Ripon; I'm just an everyday voter hoping that my member will do a good job with the opportunities she's been given," she said.
It was unclear whether a future in parliament still awaited Ms De Santis.
"I haven't thought about running again at this stage," she said.
"It's been a fantastic experience and the support across all of the communities in Ripon was absolutely humbling."
- Ararat Advertiser
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