STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL
JAMAICA, NY 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
The above-named tenant filed a timely petition for administrative
review of an order issued on March 11, 1988, concerning the housing
accommodations known as 2370 Ocean Avenue, Apartment 6M, Brooklyn,
New York, wherein the Rent Administrator determined the tenant's
complaint of a reduction of services.
The Commissioner has reviewed all the evidence in the record and
has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the
issues raised by the petition.
The tenant commenced this proceeding by filing a complaint
asserting that the owner had failed to maintain certain services in
the subject apartment.
In an answer, the owner denied the allegations set forth in the
complaint or otherwise asserted that all required repairs had been
or will be completed.
Thereafter an inspection of the subject apartment was conducted by
a DHCR inspector who reported that screens were missing from the
living room, bedroom and kitchen windows; that the bathroom towel
bar was broken; that there was evidence of roaches, although
extermination services were provided; and that there were no
The Rent Administrator ordered rent reductions for the broken towel
bar and roach infestation conditions. As registration information
indicated that a rent reduction for failure to repair venetian
blinds issued on March 17, 1954 (Docket Number A39553 PTA 8107)
remained in full force and effect, the Rent Administrator found
that no further reduction was warranted for this item. The owner
was also directed to restore these services.
The Rent Administrator dismissed the tenant's complaint regarding
missing window screens on the grounds that the record failed to
indicate that screens were a service provided by the owner.
In the appeal, the tenant reiterated assertions below that the
screens were a service provided by the owner when the building was
built and when the tenant took occupancy in 1940.
After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion
that the petition should be denied.
Pursuant to Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction Regulations
the Rent Administrator may impose a rent reduction where there have
been, among other things, a decrease in essential services,
furniture, furnishings or equipment.
The tenant asserted and the owner denied that screens were an
essential service. The inspector reported that screens were
missing. The record below is in fact equivocal in that it does
not resolve the question whether screens are an essential service
or equipment the owner must provide.
To the extent that the Rent Administrator found that the evidence
of record did not indicate that screens were a base date service,
the order should be affirmed. However, this order is issued
without prejudice to the right of the tenant to raise the issue in
a new complaint and to submit such evidence. In the event the
tenant refiles a complaint, a hearing may be required to resolve
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent and Eviction Regulations for
the City of New York, 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, in accordance with the above.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA