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.:
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On March 28, 1988, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a
petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on
March 9, 1988, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodation known as 16 Elliot Place, Bronx, New York, apartment
5-J, wherein the Administrator determined that a reduction in rent
was warranted based upon a reduction in services.
The 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 apartment.
On November 16, 1987, the tenant filed a complaint alleging that,
among other things, the owner was not providing heat and hot water
The owner filed an answer to the complaint on January 11, 1988,
alleging that all services were being maintained and that he would
welcome an inspection at the premises to prove the point.
A Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) inspection was
conducted on January 27, 1988. The inspector's report showed:
1. Heat is provided:
a) Inside temperature 60@
b) Outside temperature 20@
2. Hot water is provided:
a) temperature 128@
On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted, in pertinent part, that
all services were being provided at all times. In support of his
claim that heat and hot water services were being provided, the
owner submitted sundry paid oil invoices from the Original Con-
sumers' Oil Heating Corporation.
The petition was served on the tenant on June 20, 1988, but the
tenant failed to file an answer to the petition.
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal
should be denied.
Pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Rent Stabilization Code, a
tenant may apply to the Division and Housing and Community Renewal
(DHCR) for reduction of the legal regulated rent to 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 heat
and hot water.
The Commissioner has considered the owner's claim on appeal that
heating services are being provided and rejects this argument.
Although the inspector found that heat and hot water services are
being provided, the inspection report noted that the inside
temperature was 60@ Fahrenheit, on January 27, 1988, when the
outside temperature was 20@ Fahrenheit.
This clearly fails to meet the inside temperature standard
established by Section 27-2029 of the Housing Maintenance Code,
which essentially provides that the minimum temperature to be
maintained during the period from October first through May thirty-
first, between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m., must be at
least 68@ Fahrenheit, whenever the outside temperature falls below
The Commissioner notes that the owner filed an answer to the
tenant's complaint, on January 13, 1988, in response to the
DHCR notice mailed on January 7, 1988, and that the order was not
based on the owner's default but on the results of the inspection.
The Commissioner finds, therefore, that the Rent Administrator
properly determined that the owner was providing inadequate heat
service and properly issued the rent reduction order of March 9,
Upon a restoration of services the owner may separately apply for
a rent restoration.
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 Stabiliza-
tion Law and Code, it is
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, denied, and
the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same hereby, is
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA