BG 410106-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 NO.:                  
          BG 410106-RO; 
                    SAMUEL GERTEL,
                                                  RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                  DOCKET NO.:
                                   PETITIONER     044506              
          ----------------------------------x



            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
                                          

          On July 13, 1987, the above-named petitioner-owner filed an Admin- 
          istrative Appeal against an order issued on June 24, 1987, by the 
          Rent Administrator, 92-31 Union Hall Street, Jamaica, New York, 
          concerning the housing accommodation known as 808 West End Avenue, 
          New York, N.Y., Apartment 1109.

          The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly deter- 
          mined the apartment and building services the owner is obligated to 
          and does provide to the subject tenant and whether the registration 
          statement was properly amended to reflect those services.

          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 administrative appeal.

          On September 22, 1984, the tenant commenced the original proceeding 
          by filing with the Division a tenant's objection form to the 
          rent/services registration statement filed by the owner.  The 
          tenant alleged that the owner did not include therein a number of 
          building services and that the apartment contains two and not three 
          rooms.  Specifically, the tenant stated that the following services 
          were either incorrect or omitted from the registration:

                    1.   We do not have two full-time service 
                         employees.
          2.   Laundry room facilities.
          3.   We have two automatic elevators.













          BG 410106-RO




          On April 20, 1987, the owner answered the objection alleging, in 
          essence, that there are two full time maintenance employees; that 
          a separate independent contractor provides laundry-room services to 
          the tenants and that there are two automatic elevators in the 
          building.  No answer was included concerning the room count of the 
          subject apartment.

          The Rent Administrator's order, appealed herein, amended the 
          registration to include those services listed by the tenant based 
          on the evidence in the record, including the owner's answer 
          submitted below.  Additionally, the Rent Administrator determined 
          that the apartment consists of two rooms based on the owner's 
          failure to answer the tenant's challenge to the room count.

          On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserts that the apartment contains 
          three rooms and not two; that the laundry facilities are provided 
          by an independent contractor and is, therefore, not a service re- 
          quired to be maintained by the owner; that he did not answer the 
          tenant's challenge to the room count because the Division of 
          Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) never requested or directed 
          the owner to provide such an answer and that evidence in the form 
          of apartment floor plans submitted on appeal, support his assertion 
          that the subject apartment is a three-room apartment.

          After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the 
          Commissioner is of the opinion that the Administrative appeal 
          should be granted.

          Section 2528.2 of the Rent Stabilization Code requires the initial 
          registration filed for each housing accommodation to include, among 
          other things, "the number of rooms in such housing accommodations" 
          and "all services provided for in the last lease or rental 
          agreement, provided or required to be provided on the applicable 
          base date, or thereafter."

          A room has been defined as:

               1.   A windowless kitchen containing at least 59 
                    square feet.
               2.   An enclosed area with window containing at 
                    least 60 square feet.
               3.   An enclosed area without window containing at 
                    least 80 square feet.
               4.   Do not include bathroom, walk-in closet, etc.











          BG 410106-RO


          A careful review of the floor plan submitted by the owner reveals 
          that the subject apartment contains a kitchen, bedroom and living 
          room for a total of three rooms.  The dining room is not an 
          enclosed area and is, therefore, not considered a room according to 
          the aforecited definition.

          Moreover, the file reveals that the owner was not in fact notified 
          that the tenant's objection contained a room count challenge.

          The Commissioner notes that, although provided an opportunity to do 
          so, the tenant did not submit an answer to the petition.

          Required services are defined by Section 2520.6(r) of the Code and 
          include ancillary services for which there is a separate charge.  
          However, a service continuously provided by an independent con- 
          tractor for which there is no common ownership between the operator 
          of such service and the owner is not subject to the provisions of 
          the Code.

          The record clearly shows that laundry-room service has been 
          provided by an independent contractor.  Therefore, this service is 
          not subject  to the provisions of the Code and need not be 
          registered.

          Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that, in pertinent part, the 
          Rent Administrator erred in issuing the order below and that 
          laundry room service should not have been added to the registration 
          statement and further that the registration should be amended to 
          reflect this fact and to show that the apartment has three rooms 
          rather than two.


          THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent Stabili- 
          zation Law and Code, it is,

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted, 
          and the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby is, revoked, 
          in pertinent part, in accordance with this Order and Opinion.


          ISSUED:



                                                                           
                                                JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                Acting Deputy Commissioner

                                          







    

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