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
APPEALS OF DOCKET NOS.:
LARRY FRANKEL, Owner
MARGARET FAURER, Tenant RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING TENANT'S PETITION FOR
ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW AND DISMISSING OWNER'S
PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On December 2, 1987, the above-named petition-tenant timely refiled
a petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on
October 14, 1987, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodation known as 365 Westminster Road, Brooklyn, New York,
wherein the Administrator determined that the owner was not pro-
viding certain services, directed restoration of such services, and
ordered a rent reduction for rent-controlled tenants only.
On January 8, 1988, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a peti-
tion against the same order.
These petitions are being consolidated herein because they involve
common questions of law and fact.
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 administrative appeal.
The record reveals that 21 tenants joined in filing a Statement of
Complaint of a Decrease in Building-Wide Services on February 3,
1987, in which they listed several services not being maintained by
the owner, including defective windows and front door and roof
doors that are always open.
In answer to the complaint dated April 9, 1987, the owner stated in
relevant part that all windows were repaired two years ago, the
front door hinges were adjusted for better closing, and the roof
egress is a fire exit that cannot be locked.
In a reply submitted by a representative of the tenants it was
stated that the windows were repaired in an unworkmanlike manner,
the door check on the entrance door needs adjustment to insure
regularity and consistency in self-closing speed, and the exit
doors must be equipped with fire exit/panic hardware.
A physical inspection by a Division of Housing and Community
Renewal (DHCR) inspector on June 2, 1987, revealed that there were
two broken panes of glass on the fourth floor and the roof door was
unlocked. Another inspection on July 2, 1987, revealed that the
building entrance door was not fitted properly and, therefore, does
not close properly.
Based on the inspector's report, orders were issued reducing the
rent of all rent-controlled tenants in the building by $5.00 per
month. For all rent-stabilized tenants who joined in the complaint
the owner was directed to restore services but a rent reduction was
determined to be not warranted.
In the petition for administrative review filed by one tenant, it
is alleged in substance that the orders for rent-controlled and
rent-stabilized tenants are inconsistent and the stabilized tenants
should also have been granted a rent reduction.
The owner's petition was not filed within 35 days of the issuance
of the Administrator's order as required by Section 2529.2 of the
Rent Stabilization Code and must be dismissed.
The tenant's petition was served on the owner on February 29, 1988.
After careful consideration of the evidence of record, the Commis-
sioner is of the opinion that the tenant's petition should be
Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code requires DHCR to
order a rent reduction, upon application by a tenant, where it is
found that the owner has failed to maintain required services. The
record in this case indicates that the tenant requested a rent
reduction, and the inspection confirmed the existence of conditions
complained of. Based on this finding, the Rent Administrator was
required to order a rent reduction.
The petitioner-tenant was asked, by a notice dated April 2, 1993,
to submit written evidence of authorization to file a PAR on behalf
of other tenants. The tenant failed to provide such evidence.
Accordingly, the petition is deemed to have been filed by the in-
dividual tenant only and not as the authorized representative of
any other tenants.
The rent for Apartment 6-G is hereby reduced to the level in effect
prior to the last rent guideline increase which commenced before
the effective date of this rent reduction. The effective date of
the rent reduction is April 1, 1987, the first rent payment day
after DHCR informed the owner of the tenant's complaint. The owner
is directed to refund to the tenant all amounts collected in excess
of the reduced rent, since the effective date of the rent reduc-
tion. If the owner fails to make a refund within 30 days of this
order, the tenant is authorized to deduct the amount from future
rents until the total amount has been refunded.
Until the owner files an application and an order is issued
restoring the rent, the owner may not demand or collect any rent
increase above the level established herein.
The Division's records reveal that the owner's rent restoration
application (Docket No. CR230126OR) was granted in part for the
rent-controlled tenants on July 6, 1989, based on a finding that
the broken window panes had been replaced but the building entrance
door and roof door lock had not been repaired. No subsequent rent
restoration application has been filed. Since the rent may not be
partially restored for rent-stabilized tenants, the rent reduction
ordered herein for Apt. 6-G remains in effect.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code,
ORDERED, that the owner's petition be, and the same hereby is, dis-
missed as untimely, the tenant's petition be, and the same hereby
is, granted and the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same
hereby is, modified in accordance with this order and opinion.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA