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.: BK630015RO
Artha Management, Inc. DOCKET NO.: AI630080B
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On November 4, 1987, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a
petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on
October 23, 1987, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodations known as 1954 Unionport Road, Bronx, N.Y., various
apartments, wherein the Administrator determined that there was a
diminution of services and reduced the rent by $6.00 per month for
all rent controlled tenants in the building.
The Rent Administrator also directed full restoration of 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 reduced
the rent of the subject apartments.
On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserts, in substance, that it was
denied due process because as current owners, it was not served
with a copy of the tenants' complaint and further that the act of
failing to remove rubbish was excusable because of its
rehabilitation of the premises.
The record reveals that on September 23, 1986, one rent controlled
tenant filed a complaint alleging a decrease in building-wide
services, including lack of superintendent services, dirty public
halls and an accumulation of garbage in public areas.
An answer was filed which alleged that all repairs had been made.
Based on a physical inspection on January 6, 1987, which revealed
that the halls and stairs were soiled and there was rubbish on the
back and side of the building, the Administrator issued the rent
reduction order appealed herein.
The petition was served on the tenants on December 22, 1987 and on
February 2, 1988, the tenant who had filed the complaint filed an
answer to the petition stating that the owner had failed to correct
the service conditions noted in the rent reduction order of October
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal
should be denied.
For rent controlled tenants Section 2202.16 of the Rent and
Eviction Regulations provides that a finding that an owner has
failed to maintain essential services may result in an order of
decrease in maximum rent, in a amount determined by the discretion
of the Rent Administrator. The rent reduction is to be in an
amount which the Administrator finds to be the reduction rental
value of the housing accommodation because of the decrease in
essential services and therefore results in a rent reduction for
all rent controlled tenants in the building regardless of whether
they joined in the complaint. Essential services are defined by
Section 2200.3(b) to include janitorial services and the removal of
The record reveals that Artha Management, Inc. became the managing
agent of the subject building, on September 18, 1986, and that the
complaint was filed on September 25, 1986.
The Commissioner has considered the owner's claim on appeal that it
was denied its right of due process because of the DHCR's failure
to serve it with a copy of the tenants' complaint and finds this
claim to be without basis.
In a letter dated November 3, 1986, the petitioner, Artha Manage-
ment, Inc., informed the Division that:
Please be advised that Alfred Groner and A. Kim Realty are no
longer the owners and managing agents of the subject premises.
The building was net-leased by 1954 Unionport Associates on
September 18, 1986 and is managed by Artha Management, Inc.
As the new managing agents, we hereby seek permission to
answer this complaint.
Moreover, the petitioner clearly stated in its appeal that "we did
receive a copy of the complaint with the above cited Docket Number
(ZA630080B), but it pertained to apartment 1-D only."
Not only was the prior owner served with a copy of the complaint,
but the Commissioner finds that the petitioner (managing agent) was
cognizant of and participated in the proceedings below.
The owner is advised that although only one tenant filed the
complaint, since that tenant was rent controlled, the Administrator
properly ordered rent reductions for all rent controlled tenants in
the building to reflect the decreased rental value of those
The Commissioner also finds the petitioner's contention that the
rehabilitation of the subject building excused the existence of
dirt and debris in and around the building to be without merit.
The owner remains obligated to maintain services even during the
rehabilitation of the premises.
Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that the Administrator properly
based his determination on the entire record, including the results
of the on-site inspection conducted in the subject building.
The Division's records show that the Rent Administrator partially
restored rent on April 12, 1989, under Docket Number CI630046OR, in
the amount of $3.00 per month for each rent controlled apartment
and that the owner's application for restoration of the remaining
$3.00 per month is pending under Docket No. HB6301210R.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent and
Eviction Regulations, 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,
Joseph A. D'Agosta