BC 420518 RO
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.: BC-420518-RO
ALEX GATANIS, DRO DOCKET NO.: LC-003999-S
ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On March 23, 1987, the above-named owner filed a petition for
administrative review of an order issued on December 31, 1986,
by a District Rent Administrator concerning the housing
accommodation known as Apartment 5 FE 410 West 36th Street, New
York, New York, wherein rent was reduced due to a diminution of
The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record
and has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant
to the issues raised by the petition for review.
On July 18 1985 the subject tenant, Lorraine Mayo, filed an
application for a rent reduction based on the owner's alleged
failure to maintain service alleging, inter alia a defective
stove and that her apartment lacked electrical outlets "since
On August 20, 1985 the owner interposed an answer to the tenant's
complaint wherein he alleged that the stove was in operating
condition and that the apartment is rent-controlled, that the
tenant has been in occupancy for thirty-two years with the same
electrical sockets that the apartment came with and that if she
wanted additional sockets she would have to pay more for them.
On July 15, 1986 a physical inspection of the subject apartment
was carried out by the Division of Housing and Community Renewal
(DHCR). The inspector, in his report, noted that the broiler
portion of the stove was inoperative and that the apartment had
no electrical outlets. The inspector noted that the tenant uses
extension wiring plugged into sockets attached to light bulbs.
On December 31, 1986 the District Rent Administrator issued the
order here under review finding that a diminution of services had
occurred, reducing the tenant's monthly rental by seven dollars
BC 420518 RO
(four dollars for the broiler and three dollars for electric
In his petition for administrative review the owner requests
reversal of the administrator's order alleging that it was mailed
to his old address, that the boiler is operating properly and
that the apartment has always had electrical sockets.
The Commissioner notes that the administrator's order was mailed
to an incorrect address. Accordingly, the petition is accepted
as having been timely filed.
After careful consideration the Commissioner is of the opinion
that this petition should be granted in part.
After a close review of the records of this Division and its
predecessor agencies the Commissioner finds that wall outlets
have never been indicated therein as essential equipment included
in the apartment rental nor has the owner ever received a rent
increase for providing wall outlets. Moreover, the Commissioner
notes that the tenant, in her original complaint, states that the
electrical situation in the apartment has been the same since
1953 when she first took occupancy. Accordingly, the
Commissioner determines that it was error for the administrator
to reduce the rent for this item and that the portion of the rent
reduction attributable to this item (three dollars monthly) must
Pursuant to Section 2202.4 of the Rent and Eviction Regulations,
the landlord and the tenant may, however, by mutual voluntary
agreement, subject to the approval of the Administrator, agree to
the installation of wall outlets with an adjustment in the max-
imum rent equal to 1/40th of the cost of the installation.
The Commissioner also notes that the owner has offered no evi-
dence that the oven broiler was repaired prior to the issuance
of the Administrator's order. Accordingly, the four dollars
monthly rent reduction for the inoperative broiler should be
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 may determine.
The record in the instant case reveals that the tenant complained
about problems with the broiler in her apartment and a physical
inspection of the premises confirmed that this problem indeed
Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that the administrator
properly determined that the owner had not made needed repairs to
the broiler and for this reason a rent reduction is warranted.
If there are arrears due to the owner as a result of the instant
determination, the tenant shall be permitted to pay off the
arrears in six equal monthly installments beginning with the
first rent payment date after issuance of this order and opinion.
BC 420518 RO
Should the tenant vacate after the issuance of this order or have
already vacated, said arrears shall be payable immediately.
This Order and Opinion is issued without prejudice to the owner's
rights as they may pertain to an application to the Division for
a restoration of rent based upon the restoration of services.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent and Eviction Regulations
for New York City, it is
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted
in part and that the administrator's order be and the same
hereby is, modified to the extent of revoking the three dollar
monthly reduction for the absence of electrical outlets. In all
other respects the District Rent Administrator's order is