STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE : ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.: AL-430316-RO
ARNOLD S. WARWICK DRO DOCKET NO.: ZLCS-000262-B
& COMPANY, LTD,
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
The above named petitioner timely filed a Petition for Administrative
Review against an order issued on October 17, 1986 by the Rent
Administrator, 92-31 Union Hall Street, Jamaica, New York, concerning the
housing accommodations known as 180 Prince Street, Various Apartments,
New York, New York, wherein the Administrator directed a building-wide
rent reduction based on a decrease in services.
The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record and has
carefully considered that portion of the record concerning the issues
raised in the administrative appeal.
This proceeding was commenced on December 12, 1984 by the tenant (James R.
Leone) filing a complaint based on a decrease in building-wide services,
alleging, among other things, the existence of malodorous garbage waste in
the backyard "from restaurant."
On December 17, 1984, the Division sent the owner (DeVito and Associates)
a copy of the complaint, and the owner responded by requesting that an
inspection take place at the premise.
On October 4, 1985, a Division staff member conducted a physical
inspection of the premises and reported, in pertinent part, that the
backyard is in need of cleaning, loose garbage on the ground - from the
On October 15, 1985, the Division sent a copy of the October 4,1 985
inspection report to the owner, who was further advised to make the
necessary repairs and/or restore services within the next 10 days and to
so advise the Division in affidavit form. The record discloses no
response to this notice by the owner.
On September 5, 1986, the Division conducted a follow-up inspection of the
subject premises. The inspection reported: "backyard is in need of
cleaning - loose garbage on the ground."
In the order issued on October 17, 1986, the Administrator ordered a
building-wide $5.00 per month rent reduction pursuant to Section 2202.16
DOCKET NUMBER: AL 430316-RO
of the Regulations based on the inspection's findings that the backyard
has loose garbage on the ground and is in need of cleaning.
In the petition, the owner seeks reversal of the order, noting
preliminarily that it was not afforded a prior opportunity to respond as
the Division had sent all prior correspondence in this proceeding to the
prior owner (DeVito); that the loose garbage found at the time of the
inspection must be attributed to the tenants' failure to properly dispose
of their garbage in the disposal cans provided therefor; that one of the
owner's employees tidies up around the garbage cans at least once a day;
that the Administrator's order rewards the tenants for their own
sloppiness; and that this is an instance of a temporary condition that was
coincidentally existing when the inspector stopped by.
The tenants did not submit an answer to the petition.
The Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be denied.
Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction Regulations provides that if the
owner fails to maintain services, the Administrator may order a decrease
in the maximum rent in an amount which the Administrator in his discretion
Review of the evidence of record discloses that the Administrator's
determination was based on the entire record including the results of the
October 4, 1985 and September 5, 1985 physical inspections which disclosed
the existence of loose garbage in the backyard. Therefore, the
Commissioner finds that the Administrator correctly determined that the
owner had failed to maintain services and properly reduced the tenants'
The assertion that the subject condition was caused by the tenants is
self- serving and does not relieve the owner from his responsibility to
maintain services. Moreover, this claim is readily discredited in view of
the complainant's initial allegation, which was confirmed by the October
4, 1985 inspection finding, that the garbage problem is from the
restaurant, not the tenants.
The claims that the owner's employee tidy up the area daily, and that the
subject findings were coincidently existing when the inspector happened
by, are similarily suspect given that two separate inspections, conducted
nearly one year apart, disclosed the identical garbage problem in the
This Order and Opinion is issued without prejudice to the owner's right to
file the appropriate application with the Division for a restoration of
rent based upon the restoration of services, if the facts so warrant.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Eviction Regulations for New York
City, it is
DOCKET NUMBER: AL 430316-RO
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, denied and the
Administrator's order be and hereby is, affirmed.