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.: BH210186RO
FARHAT REALTY CORP. DOCKET NO.: AJ210266S
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On August 4, 1987, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a
petition for administrative review against an order issued on July
14, 1987 by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodation known as 1577 Bushwick Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y. Apt. 2,
wherein the Administrator reduced the rent based on a finding that
the owner had failed to provide or maintain services. The
determination was based on the findings of a DHCR inspection, which
was conducted on March 18, 1987. The Rent Administrator also
directed restoration of all services.
The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the
record and has carefully considered that portion of the record
relevant to the issue raised by the administrative appeal.
The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly
issued the order which found that a diminution of service had
This proceeding was commenced when the tenant filed a
complaint on September 30, 1986 in which several items requiring
repairs were listed.
In answer to the complaint, the owner stated that the subject
apartment is located in a two family house and is not subject to
regulation. A certificate of occupancy confirming this fact was
In the petition for administrative review, the owner again
asserts that the building is a two family dwelling and not subject
In answer to the petition, the tenant asserts that the subject
building is combined with two other buildings to constitute a
horizontal multiple dwelling, sharing a common boiler and water and
sewage line, and occupied by six or more families.
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record
the Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal
should be denied.
The Commissioner has considered the petitioner's contention
that the subject apartment is located in a two family house and
that the DHCR lacks jurisdiction to consider the tenant's complaint
and finds this argument to be without merit.
A review of DHCR records shows that in an appeal filed by the
tenant, under Docket No. EL210252RT, involving the same owner and
premises, the Commissioner issued a determination on June 15, 1993,
which addressed the jurisdictional issue raised by the owner
Based on a DHCR inspection conducted on behalf of the
Commissioner, on appeal in Docket No. EL210252RT, the Commissioner
found that the tenant's building (1577 Bushwick Avenue) is a
component of a horizontal multiple dwelling along with 1573
Bushwick Avenue and that based on a preponderance of the credible
evidence, apartment #2 at 1577 Bushwick Avenue is subject to
regulation under the Rent Stabilization Law and Code. That same
decision determined that the subject apartment is contained in a
horizontal multiple dwelling containing eight residential units.
A review of the record in the instant proceeding indisputably
shows that the complained-of-conditions and concomitant diminution
of service existed at the time of the Division of Housing and
Community Renewal (DHCR) inspection held on March 18, 1987, and at
the time of the issuance of the Rent Administrator's order on July
Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code,
"A tenant may apply to the DHCR for a reduction of
the legal regulated rent at the level in effect prior to
the most recent guidelines adjustment, and the DHCR shall
so reduce the rent for the period for which it is found
that the owner has failed to maintain required services."
Required services are defined in Section 2520.6(r) to include
repairs and maintenance.
The owner had in excess of eight months from the date of
service of the tenant's complaint until the issuance of the
Administrator's order to investigate the tenant's complaint and to
make the necessary repairs, but failed to do so.
The Commissioner finds that the Administrator properly based
his determination on the entire record including the results of the
on-site physical inspection conducted on March 18, 1987 and that
pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Code, the Administrator was
mandated to reduce the rent upon determining that the owner had
failed to maintain services.
Accordingly, based on a preponderance of the evidence the
Commissioner finds that the owner has offered insufficient reason
to disturb the Administrator's determination and that the
Administrator properly based his determination on the entire
record, including the results of the on-site inspection conducted
in the subject apartment.
This Order and Opinion is issued without prejudice to the
owner's right to file the appropriate application with the Division
for restoration of rent based upon a restoration of services, if
the facts so warrant.
The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement that
resulted by the filing of this petition is vacated upon issuance of
this order and opinion.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent
Stabilization Law and Code, it is,
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is,
denied, and that the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same
hereby is, affirmed.
Joseph A. D'Agosta