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

          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.:              
                   THOMAS CARVELLAS,
                                                  RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                  DOCKET NO.:
                                   Petitioner     BH420059S

                                       IN PART

          The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative 
          review (PAR) of an order issued on March 29, 1988, concerning the 
          housing accommodations known as 426 Audubon Avenue, Apartment 3-F, 
          New York, New York, wherein the Rent Administrator determined that 
          certain conditions found in the subject apartment constituted serv- 
          ices decreases.  

          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.   In addition, the tenant complained 
          that the two month rent credit the tenant had agreed to in lieu of 
          painting had been insufficient to cover the tenant's costs.        
          The tenant commenced this proceeding by filing a complaint as- 
          serting 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 premises was conducted by 
          a Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) inspector who 
          reported that the living room window pane was broken, that the bell 
          and buzzer system was defective and that the apartment required 


          The Rent Administrator directed restoration of these services, and 
          further, ordered a reduction of the control rent.

          In the petition for administrative review, the owner contends, in 
          pertinent part, that the tenant did not complain that the owner was 
          not providing painting service, but rather, that the two month rent 
          credit the tenant had agreed to beforehand in lieu of painting had 
          been insufficient to cover the tenant's costs.

          The owner did not specifically address the remaining services 
          reductions, but did contend that the rent was reduced without prior 
          notice of the complaint.  Recent correspondence indicates that 
          title passed to a new owner, a relative, who asserts that all 
          services are being provided.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion 
          that the petition for administrative review, should be granted in 

          Pursuant to Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction Regulations, 
          the DHCR may decrease the legal rent if there has been a decrease 
          in essential services which may include, but are not limited to, 
          repairs, painting, decorating and maintenance.
          The record below and the tenant's answer to the owner's petition 
          confirmed the owner's assertions as to the parties' agreement 
          concerning painting.  The Commissioner concurs, therefore, that the 
          Rent Administrator's order went beyond the allegations of the ten- 
          ant's complaint in granting a rent reduction for painting defects.  
          The rent reduction granted because the apartment required painting 
          (10% of the maximum legal rent) should, therefore, be revoked.

          The Commissioner makes no finding herein as to whether painting is 
          an essential service the owner must provide the tenant.  The 
          painting service, if any,  the owner is obligated to provide a rent 
          controlled tenant is based on prior practice.  The tenant stated 
          that the tenant had done painting in the past, and the owner sug- 
          gested that painting services had been provided in some instances 
          in the past.  The record below and on appeal does not resolve the 
          question of prior practice.  This order is without prejudice to a 
          determination, in separate proceedings, whether painting is a 
          service the owner is required to provide.

          The owner's petition does not establish any further basis for 
          modifying or revoking the Administrator's order which determined 
          that the tenant's complaint of a broken window and a defective bell 


          and buzzer were true based on a physical inspection.  The claim on 
          appeal that there was no notice of the complaint is belied by the 
          record below, which reveals that the then owner was served properly 
          and that an answer was filed.  The tenant was therefore entitled to 
          rent reductions pursuant to Section 2202.16 of the City Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations.

          Any rent arrears due the owner from the tenant as a result of this 
          determination shall be paid in monthly installments equal to the 
          number of months the tenant's rent reduction has been in effect.  

          The owner may apply for rent restoration if the facts so warrant.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent and Eviction Regulations for 
          the City of New York, it is

          ORDERED, that the owner's petition be, and the same hereby is, 
          granted, in part, to the extent that the rent reduction granted 
          based on a finding that the apartment required painting be, and the 
          same hereby is, revoked.  In all other respects, the Rent Adminis- 
          trator's order is affirmed. 


                                                JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                Deputy Commissioner          


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