DOCKET NUMBERS: BC 410508-RO & BF 410414-RO (REFILE OF BD 410185-RO)
                                 STATE OF NEW YORK
                     DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                           OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                    GERTZ PLAZA
                              92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                              JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

     ------------------------------------X 
     IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE :  ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
     APPEAL OF                              DOCKET NOS.: BC 410508-RO &
                                         :  BF 410414-RO (REFILE OF
                                            BD 410185-RO)

     541 OPERATING CORP.,  PETITIONER    :  DRO DOCKET NO.: TC 059956-G
     ------------------------------------X                             

                 ORDER AND OPINION REMANDING PROCEEDINGS ON APPEAL

     The abovenamed petitioner owner filed and  refiled  timely  petitions  for
     Administrative Review against an order issued on February 17, 1987 by  the
     Rent Administrator of the Columbus Circle District Rent Office  concerning
     the housing accommodations known as 543 West 49th  Street,  Apartment  73,
     Manhattan.

     The petitions are substantially duplicates and are consolidated herein.

     The (now former) tenant, Joseph Gilday, filed a complaint of overcharge in 
     February 1982 alleging that he had taken occupancy pursuant to a one  year
     lease commencing March 15, 1981 at a rent of $350.00.

     Along with his complaint he submitted copies of  leases  with  the  2  two
     prior tenants furnished him by the owner - one with a Miguel Matos running 
     from December 25, 1980 to December 24, 1981 at  $333.06  and  one  with  a
     Mario Cuervas running from  October  24,  1980  to  October  23,  1984  at
     $317.20. Mr. Gilday urged that both leases  were  suspicious  because  the
     Matos lease bore an obviously old xeroxed signature but the information as 
     to name, dates, etc. was obviously newly hand printed; the  Cuervas  lease
     was apparently for 3 years but the total rent set forth was for  only  one
     year; and neither was signed by the owner.  He also alleged  that  a  long
     term tenant in the apartment directly  below  had  advised  him  that  the
     subject apartment had been vacated for about 2 years before he moved in.

     In response to Notices  the  owner  submitted  additional  copies  of  the
     abovenoted leases plus a series of 5 leases with one Jaime  Colon  running
     from December 1, 1972 to November 30, 1981  with  rents  from  $180.00  to
     $265.59.

     The record also contains  a  copy  of  a  Report  of  Statutory  Decontrol
     (vacancy) filed December 4, 1972 stating that the apartment became  vacant
     on November 30, 1972 and was rerented on  December  1,  1972  and  listing
     Jamie Colon as the tenant.

     Mr. Gilday alleged that he had been advised by the  former  rental  agents
     for the building (Mullen & Woods)  that  the  last  prior  tenant  of  the
     apartment was Jaime Colon at a rent of $70.80 and that the  apartment  was
     vacant from 1978 until hr took occupancy.


     The herein appealed order of the Rent Administrator states that the  owner
     had failed to submit a full rental history and that  the  tenant  disputes






          DOCKET NUMBERS: BC 410508-RO & BF 410414-RO (REFILE OF BD 410185-RO)
     the history that was submitted; established an initial rent of $301.72  by
     a default procedure; and directed a refund of $2335.98 through October 14, 
     1984 including interest.

     In its petitions the owner, in substances, urges that there is, in fact, a 
     complete rental history which shows that there were no overcharges.

     In response the former tenant reiterates his prior allegations.

     The Commissioner is of the opinion that the proceeding should be  remanded
     for further processing.

     The record does, in fact, contain a  complete  rental  history,  albeit  a
     strongly disputed one, so the Administrator's order is  incorrect  on  its
     face.

     If the rental history was rejected because of  the  tenant's  allegations,
     the order does not clearly say so nor  is  there  any  indication  in  the
     record of an investigation of the allegations.

     On remand the matter should be reexplored by examination of the  originals
     of all leases and other rental records, inquiries of former rental  agents
     and a hearing.  The owner should be given an opportunity  to  explain  the
     submission of documents which clearly depart from normal business records.

     If it should be found that the owner, in fact, submitted falsified  rental
     documents in addition to imposing civil penalties treble damages should be 
     imposed.

     THEREFORE, pursuant to the Rent Stabilization Law and Code, it is

     ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby  is,  granted  to  the
     extent of remanding the proceeding to the Rent Administrator  for  further
     processing in accord  herewith.   The  order  of  the  Rent  Administrator
     remains in full force and effect except  that  the  directive  to  make  a
     refund is stayed until a new order is issued on remand.

     ISSUED:





                                                                   
                                            ELLIOT SANDER
                                         Deputy Commissioner




                                                   
    

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