Former mayor Tony Herbert has warmly welcomed the decision to reinstate sacked Warrnambool City Council chief executive officer Peter Schneider.
"It's incredible," he gushed.
"Peter is just over the moon. Everything he wished for was provided by the judge this morning.
"The decision was very clear cut. It's really good."
The former civic leader said there had been an enormous show of support for Mr Schneider since Justice Michael McDonald handed down his decision to quash the sacking soon after 9.30am Friday.
"People in Warrnambool don't like this sort of stuff," he said.
"They want to give people a fair go.
"This was just a political game some people thought they would play.
"The judge was very firm, very, very firm in what he interpreted had happened."
Mr Herbert said like all the other previous councillors he did not know Mr Schneider before he started working with the CEO.
"There was a lot to fix. Peter first needed to see what he needed to fix, the things he needed to address," he said.
"Every week he found more things to fix. He wrote them all down and in the end he had about 80 things that needed to be addressed."
Mr Herbert said the court decision was about fairness and natural justice.
"This guy (Mr Schneider) is just so committed to the city," he said.
"He now has the opportunity to finish what started and to clear his name.
"I remember several councillors talked about looking after each other and supporting each other during COVID.
"But at the same time they were involved in this underhanded conspiracy against the CEO. It was just so hypocritical.
"I'm pleased that justice has been served. I'm disappointed I won't be there to see the good work being done."
Mr Herbert said he was delighted that Mr Schneider's stance had been vindicated.
"Sometimes you just have to make a stand. Not only has Peter won but he's won clearly," he said.
"The judge was very firm. Everyone from the CEO to the youngest newest casual worker at the council deserves to be afforded natural justice.
"On July 14, 2020, Peter Schneider received no natural justice from the council, but that has now been rectified.
"I'm pleased for Peter both professionally and personally. For him and his family and the Warrnambool community.
"He can now hit the ground running back as the CEO. I'm also really pleased for the staff at the council.
"They can have some continuity. This issue is now done, dusted, finished and settled.
"The staff can all move on and do the great work they do."
Mr Herbert said the investigation of the Local Government Inspectorate was still ongoing.
"They were probably waiting to see what happened in the Supreme Court," he said.
"They are looking into the actions of certain councillors," he said.
Former councillor Peter Sycopoulis said the Warrnambool community should be happy with the court decision.
"I congratulate Mr. Schneider on the result of his Supreme Court hearing and commend him and his wife Terri-Anne for the manner in which they stood up to this act of betrayal by four former city Councillors," he said.
"I will be interested to learn if the local government inspectorate now completes its investigation and possibly holds the four former councillors to account along with any council officer or former council officer who may have been complicit in this act," he said.
Former Mayor Michael Neoh - who was on the positive side of the council's 4-3 vote to sack Mr Schneider - said the Supreme Court had made its decision and that was to be respected
"At the time we made the decision it was based on the legal advice that was provided to us," he said.
"That advice was very clear on the interpretation of that contract clause," he said.
Former councillor David Owen said the Supreme Court decision was clear.
"The judge has made his decision and that has to be abided by," he said.
"At the time (of the vote) I was quite comfortable with what we had decided.
"Now, let's move on. I wish Peter luck.
"Peter now has a very clear understanding of what's expected of him.
"I would say it would be very difficult for him to return to that role, at least initially."
Former councillor Sue Cassidy said she respected the judge's decision.
"We as a community need to move forward," she said.
"Warrnambool has some great opportunities ahead, such as key infrastructure, and we need to get on with it," she said.
A call was also put in to former councillor Kylie Gaston.
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