STATE OF NEW YORK
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                               JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.:              
                    CHARLES SUTTON 
                  MODRAY REALTY INC.,             RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                  DOCKET NO.:
                                   Petitioner     BB630082B

                                       IN PART

          The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative 
          review (PAR) of an order issued on September 21, 1987, concerning 
          the housing accommodations known as 2205 Davidson Avenue, Bronx, 
          New York, wherein the Rent Administrator determined that certain 
          conditions found in the subject building constituted services 

          The Commissioner has reviewed all the evidence in the record and 
          has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the 
          issues raised by the petition.              

          The tenants commenced this proceeding by filing a complaint as- 
          serting that the owner had failed to maintain certain services in 
          the subject building. 

          In an answer, the owner denied the allegations set forth in the 
          complaint or otherwise asserted that all required repairs had been 
          or will be completed.

          Thereafter, an inspection of the subject premises was conducted by 
          a Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) inspector who 
          confirmed the existence of defective intercoms, and rusty fire 
          escapes requiring painting.  The inspector also reported that the 
          elevator was not operating at the time of inspection, and that 
          tenants in several apartments stated that they did not get extermi-
          nation services.


          The Rent Administrator directed restoration of these services, and 
          further, ordered a reduction of the stabilization and control 

          In the petition for administrative review, the owner states that 
          intercom defects have been corrected, that the painting of fire 
          escapes was completed after an interruption of the work due to cold 
          weather, that extermination services have always been provided on 
          a regular basis, and that the inoperative elevator condition 
          reported by the inspector coincided with a shutdown of the elevator 
          on the date of inspection for the purpose of repairs.

          The owner also submitted the signed statement of numerous tenants 
          to the effect that they took occupancy with knowledge and consent 
          that, for security reasons, there was no system to buzz someone 
          into the building from the apartments.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion 
          that the petition should be granted in part.

          Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code, DHCR is 
          required to order a rent reduction, upon application by a tenant, 
          where it is found that an owner has failed to maintain any required 

          The Commissioner is of the opinion that the finding that extermina- 
          tion services were not provided, based on the statements of several 
          tenants to the DHCR inspector to that effect, is not a proper pre- 
          dicate for rent reductions in the absence of any finding of roach 
          and rodent infestation, and should be revoked.

          The Administrator also granted rent reductions pursuant to Section 
          2202.16 of the City Rent and Eviction Regulations, notwithstanding 
          that no rent controlled tenant signed the complaint.  In fact all 
          the regulated apartments in the subject building are registered as 
          rent stabilized units.  The list of rent controlled tenants appears 
          to have been derived from a 1972 order of maximum base rents for 
          the subject building. The Administrator's order should be amended 
          to revoke these rent reductions.

          The owner's petition does not establish any other basis for further 
          modifying or revoking the Administrator's order which determined 
          that the owner was not maintaining required services based on a 
          physical inspection confirming the existence of defective condi- 
          tions in the subject premises for which a rent reduction is 


          The owner's allegations of forgery and misrepresentation notwith- 
          standing, the record reveals that some tenants have not retracted 
          their signatures from the complaint.  The tenants who assert that 
          they did not knowingly sign the complaint do so for the first time 
          on appeal at the owner's request.  These tenants' request to with- 
          draw from the complaint cannot be considered in this proceeding 
          since the orders when issued were proper based on the record pre- 
          sented, and must therefore be followed.  Although some tenants may 
          voluntarily choose to pay more than the legal rent, this does not 
          affect their right to a rent decrease based on reduced services.

          The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatements that resulted 
          by the filing of the petition is vacated upon issuance of this 
          order and opinion.

          The owner may file a rent restoration application if the facts so 

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent Stabiliza- 
          tion Law and Code, and the Rent and Evictions Regulations for New 
          York City, it is

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted in 
          part, and that the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same 
          hereby is, amended to revoke the finding of a lack of extermina- 
          tion services as a predicate for rent reductions, and to revoke 
          rent control rent reductions.  In all other respects, the Adminis- 
          trator's order is affirmed.


                                                JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                Deputy Commissioner          


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