BC 430523-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
                                
                                
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IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE     ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.: BC 430523 RO

     IVAN STUX                          DISTRICT RENT
                                        ADMINISTRATOR'S DOCKET
NO.:  LCS 000419 B
                        PETITIONER
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  ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
                                
      On  May  27, 1987 the above named petitioner-owner filed  a
Petition  for  Administrative  Review  against  an  order  issued
February  24,  1987.  The order concerned housing  accommodations
located at 520 West End Avenue, New York, N.Y. wherein a building-
wide  rent reduction was ordered for failure to maintain required
or essential services.

      The  Commissioner  has reviewed the  record  and  carefully
considered  that portion relevant to the issues  raised  by  this
appeal.

      The tenants commenced this proceeding by filing a Statement
of  Complaint of Decrease in Building-Wide Services on April  26,
1985.  The following services deficiencies were alleged:

          1.   Superintendent  does not live on premises  and  is
               not available
          
          2.   Cleaning   of  public  areas  is  infrequent   and
               inadequate
          
          3.   Extermination is infrequent and inadequate
          
          4.   Exterior  masonry  is loose and  crumbling;  large
               blocks have fallen; pointing needed
          
          5.   Entrance doors fail to latch

          6.   Stairs sag and stair rails loose
          7.   Brick wall by rear yard bulging and appears to  be
               in danger of collapse
          
          8.   Rear  yard littered with debris and plaster; unlit
               at night
          
          9.   Fire  escapes unpainted and rusty; several ladders
               loose
          
         10.   Exterior window frames unpainted and rotting badly
     
         11.   Garbage   cans   battered  and  only   2   contain
               inoperable lids
     
The  tenants did not request a rent reduction.  The complaint was
served on the owner and an opportunity to respond was afforded.

      The  owner  filed  a response on May 25,  1985  wherein  he
alleged the following:

          1.   Any problems will be rectified
          
          2.   The  tenants  refused to meet  with  him   without
          recording the session or having "strangers" present
          
          3.   The tenant who signed the complaint is a subtenant
               who  is  in litigation with the prime tenant,  has
               not paid rent for a year, has threatened the owner
               and refuses to allow access to the apartment.
          
      A  physical inspection of the premises was carried  out  on
March 20, 1987.  The inspector reported the following conditions:

          1.   Inadequate garbage can containers
          
          2.   Rear yard littered with debris and plaster
          
          3.   Brick wall by rear yard bulging and near collapse
          
          4.   Stairs sagging, loose and shaky
          
          5.   Mice infestation
          
          6.   Defective building entrance door
          
          7.   Exterior masonry loose and crumbling
          
          8.   Hallway and stair wall dirty.
      The Administrator issued an Order Directing Restoration  of
Services  on  May  8, 1986. In that order the Administrator  made
clear  that if the owner did not attend to repairs within  thirty
days,   the  tenants  could  pursue  rent  reduction   or   other
disciplinary action with the Compliance Division of DHCR.

      On May 20, 1986 the owner's attorney submitted a letter  to
the  Division wherein he stated, in sum, that services  had  been
restored.   A copy of this letter was served on the tenants,  who
submitted  a reply on June 11, 1986.  In that reply, the  tenants
advised  DHCR that services had not been restored.  The  Division
advised   the  owner  of  the  tenants'  assertion  and   ordered
compliance with the Administrator's order.  The owner was further
advised  that  failure  to comply would subject  it  to  punitive
action  pursuant to the Omnibus Housing Act of l983.  On  January
14,  1987 the tenants again advised that services were not  being
maintained.

      The Compliance Bureau of DHCR ordered an inspection of  the
premises to determine if the owner had, in fact complied with the
Administrator's  order.   The  inspection  was  carried  out   on
February 4, 1987 and the inspector reported the following:

          1.   There are five garbage cans for nine tenants
          
          2.   Rear  yard  extremely  littered  with  debris  and
               plaster
          
          3.   Brick wall by rear yard bulging and out of shape
          
          4.   Inner  stairs saggy, loose and shaky.  They  slope
               to one side
          
          5.   No evidence of infestation
          
          6.   Building entrance door repaired
          
          7.   Many  bricks from wall facing West End Avenue have
               been removed but never replaced.
          
          8.   The  hallway and stairways are cluttered,  unswept
               and littered.
          
The owner was duly apprised of the results of this inspection and
that  punitive  action would be taken for failure to  correct  to
services deficiencies described above.

      On  February 24, 1987 an order was issued directing a  rent
reduction  for  rent  regulated  tenants,  based  on  the   above
described   inspector's  report  and  the  Divisions'   authority
pursuant to Section 26-516 of the Rent Stabilization Law.

     On appeal, the owner states that five conditions (inadequate
garbage cans, mice infestation, defective entrance door, exterior
masonry, and dirty hallways and stairs) have been corrected. With
regard  to the rear yard litter and brick wall, the owner  states
that  the  conditions found by the inspector  do  not  constitute
decreases  in  services.  With regard to the  stairs,  the  owner
states   that  the  sloping  condition  could  be  corrected   by
installing a brace through the ceiling of the bathroom in one  of
the  apartments,  however the tenant of  said  apartment  refuses
access.   Petitioner also claimed that he has performed extensive
work  and  has expended substantial amounts of money, to  correct
the problems that are the subject of the complaint.

      The complaining tenant filed a response to the petition  on
June  30,  1987.   The  response consisted of  2  pictures  which
purported to document the conditions of the rear yard brick  wall
and litter.

      After  careful  review of the evidence in the  record,  the
Commissioner  is  of  the opinion that this  petition  should  be
denied.

      With  regard to the owner's statements that five conditions
have been corrected, the Commissioner finds that, aside from  the
mice  infestation and entrance door, the owner had not, in  fact,
corrected  any of the conditions upon which the order here  under
review  is predicated.  The inspector clearly reported  that  the
owner had not complied with the Administrator's clear order to
restore  services.  It is settled that such a report is  entitled
to  more probative weight than the unsupported allegations  of  a
party to the proceeding.

      The Commissioner rejects the petitioner's assertions to the
effect  that  the rear yard litter and brick wall bulge  are  not
services  deficiencies  warranting a rent  reduction.   The  only
issue  in this proceeding is whether the owner complied with  the
earlier   directive  by  the  Administrator  to  restore  certain
services.   Whether the Administrator correctly  determined  that
certain  repairs  were required is not at issue  here  since  the
owner did not appeal the earlier determination, which then became
a  final order.  As for petitioner's claim that the stairs cannot
be   repaired   because  a  tenant  refuses  to  cooperate,   the
Commissioner  notes  that  since the owner  did  not  raise  this
defense during the COmpliance proceeding, it is beyond the  scope
of  review  of this administrative appeal.  The order here  under
review is affirmed.  The owner may file for rent restoration when
services have been fully restored.
      THEREFORE, pursuant to the Rent Stabilization Law and  Code
it is

      ORDERED,  that  this petition be, and the same  hereby  is,
denied,  and  that the order here under review be, and  the  same
hereby is affirmed.

ISSUED:




JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                     Acting Deputy Commissioner



    

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