BH 210217-RO

                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                               JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.:                  
          BH 210217-RO; 
                     JULIUS NOWAK/ 
                    RUSSELL REALTY,
                                                  RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                  DOCKET NO.:
                                   PETITIONER     AH 210705-S         

                                       IN PART
          On August 17, 1987, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a peti- 
          tion for administrative review of an order issued on July 13, 1987, 
          by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing accommodation 
          known as 957 Greene Avenue, Brooklyn, New York, Apartment D-9 
          wherein the Administrator determined the tenant's complaint of 
          decreased services filed on August 18, 1986.

          The challenged order reduced the tenant's rent based on the results 
          of an inspection conducted on December 10, 1986 that confirmed the 
          tenant's complaints of defective windows and broken and missing 
          bathroom floor and wall tiles.  Other conditions cited by the 
          tenant were not substantiated or were found to have been addressed.

          The owner's answer below, reiterated on appeal, advised the Admin- 
          istrator of the installation of new windows subsequent to the 
          inspection.  In fact, the tenant's affirmation of non-compliance 
          and the tenant's answer to the petition concede that new windows 
          were installed.  Division records also reveal that the owner 
          applied for a major capital improvement (MCI) rent increase per 
          Docket No. BC 230072-OM.  The record presented mandates that rent 
          reductions granted for defective windows be revoked.

          The owner's answer below was silent as to the defective bathroom 
          tiles, other than to note generally that all repairs were performed 
          within a reasonable time after arrangements could be made to obtain 
          access to the tenant's apartment.

          BH 210217-RO

          On appeal, the owner asserts that the tenant made access difficult 
          despite adequate notice, and that its own inspection immediately 
          prior to the petition revealed, no missing, broken or loose wall 
          tiles, and only a hairline crack in the floor tile which was 
          promptly addressed.

          The tenant disputed the owner's assertion of notice, and claims the 
          owner failed to provide advance notice so that she could arrange to 
          be home.  The tenant acknowledges that the bathroom floor was 
          repaired on July 28, 1987, but asserts that the bathroom wall tiles 
          are still missing or loose.

          The Administrator imposed a rent reduction based on the observa- 
          tions of the Division's inspector who reported defective bathroom 
          tiles.  The inspector, a rent agency employee, was not a party to 
          the proceedings,  and not an adversary to either the owner or the 
          tenant.  His impartial observations were properly placed in the 
          record for the Administrator's consideration.  The Adminisrator 
          properly afforded the inspector's observations great weight, par- 
          ticularly in light of the fact that the owner's answer failed to 
          speak specifically to the tenant's complaint.  

          The owner's bare assertion on appeal that its own inspection after 
          the date of the order found the bathroom tile in good condition was 
          not sufficient to warrant a reconsideration of the rent reduction 
          granted for these items.  Repairs, if any, completed after the date 
          of the Administrator's determination do not provide a reason to 
          revoke the order.  The owner also failed to establish that the 
          tenant had, in fact, denied the owner access upon proper advance 
          written notice.

          Division records do reveal that the Administrator issued an order 
          on March 9, 1988 that granted the owner's rent restoration applica- 
          tion per Docket No. BH 220075-OR.

          For the first time on appeal, the owner suggests that the rent 
          reduction order should be rescinded because the name of the com- 
          plainant was not the name of the then tenant of record. However, an 
          administrative appeal is strictly limited to a review of the facts
          and issues before the Administrator.  Having failed to raise the 
          issue below, the question cannot be considered for the first time 
          on appeal.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the City Rent Control Law and the 
          Rent and Eviction Regulations, it is,

          BH 210217-RO

          ORDERED, that the owner's petition be, and the same hereby is, 
          granted in part, to the extent of amending the rent reduction order 
          to revoke rent reductions granted for defective windows.  Any rent 
          arrears due the owner from the tenant as a result of this order may 
          be paid over the course of the next three (3) months.


                                                JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                Deputy Commissioner



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