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

          APPEAL OF                             DOCKET NO.: CD130181RO  
                                                RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                    LEFFERTS GROVE CO.,         DOCKET NO.: BI140048B       



               The above-named owner filed a timely petition for 
          administrative review of an order issued on March 14, 1988 
          concerning the housing accommodations known as 43-42 45th Street, 
          Queens, New York, wherein the Rent Administrator determined that 
          certain conditions in the building constituted building-wide 
          services reductions.

               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 tenants commenced the proceedings by filing a complaint 
          asserting that the owner had failed to maintain certain services in 
          the subject building.

               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 building was conducted 
          by a D.H.C.R. inspector who observed two roof doors that did not 
          lock and were not-self closing, a third roof door that was not 
          self-closing, two elevators that did not level properly at various 
          landings, an inoperative elevator ceiling fan, and cracked steps in 
          front of the premises.


               The Administrator's order directed restoration of these 
          services, and further, ordered a reduction of the rent controlled 

               In the petition for administrative review, the owner requests 
          reversal of the order, disputing each of the Administrator's 
          findings on various grounds.  Copies of the owner's petition were 
          served on the tenants.

               The City Building and Housing Maintenance Codes require that 
          roof door equipment must permit the door to be opened from the 
          inside in case of emergency, while preventing unauthorized access 
          from the outside.  Hook and eye latches and panic bar closing 
          systems are approved mechanisms to secure the premises from outside 
          entry while permitting the roof doors to be opened from inside 
          without a key.  The owner stated below that the doors were equipped 
          with hook and eye latches, and confirms on appeal the inspector's 
          observations below that roof door locks were not operative.  The 
          Commissioner concurs that rent reductions were not warranted for 
          the condition based on the record presented.

               The City Codes also require that roof doors be self-closing.  
          The owner's further claim that the three roof doors closed properly 
          is belied by the DHCR inspector's observations, which were entitled 
          to, and afforded, great weight.  The owner's bare assertion on 
          appeal that the conditions were tenant-induced ignores that owners 
          are responsible to repair and maintain the equipment under such 

               Rent controlled rent reductions of $3.00 per month for each of 
          two (2) roof doors were for failure to close and lock properly.  As 
          to the third roof door, the Administrator assessed a $1.00 per 
          month rent reduciton.  Rent controlled rent reductions of $1.00 per 
          month for each of the three (3) roof doors, for failure to close, 
          were warranted, and should be affirmed.  However, rent reductions 
          of $2.00 allocatable to each of two (2) roof doors for failure to 
          lock should be revoked.

               Concerning the elevators, the Commissioner notes that the 
          tenants complained that the elevators were periodically 
          inoperative.  The DHCR inspector found that the elevators were 
          operational, albeit not levelling properly.  Based on the fact that 
          condition found was not the condition cited in the complaint, and 
          in the absence of evidence that the owner was cited for violations 
          for the condition, a determination of decreased services, 
          sufficient to give rise to rent reductions, was not warranted.  

          Rent reductions rent based on a defective elevator fan are 


          similarly revoked in the absence of evidence that the owner was 
          cited for violations.

               The Administrator also awarded rent reductions based on 
          findings that steps in front of the premises were cracked.  
          However, the tenants had complained that the pavement in the front 
          of the building was cracked.  The inspector reported that there was 
          no evidence that the pavement was cracked or broken, albeit noting 
          the defective steps.  The lack of notice to the owner of the 
          condition precluded rent reductions.  The owner's request to revoke 
          these rent reductions should therefore be granted.

               Partial rent arrears of $24.00 per month may be due the owner 
          from the rent controlled tenants as a result of this order, as 

               1. Roof doors locks inoperative due to missing strike 
                  plate (2x$2.00)                                      $ 4.00

               2. Elevators not levelling with hallway floors on             
                  three (3) landings (3 x $5.00).                      $15.00

               3. Inoperative elevator ceiling fan.                    $ 2.00

               4. Cracked steps in front of premises.                  $ 3.00  

               The rent arrears shall be paid in monthly installments which 
          shall not exceed the amount of the monthly rent reduction revoked 
          herein ($24.00), subject to any adjustments paid pursuant to the 
          partial rent restoration on July 6, 1989 per Docket Number 
          CJ130134OR, effective August 1, 1989.

               THEREFORE, in accordance with the applicable provisions of the 
          Rent Stabilization Law and Code, the City Rent Control Law, and the 
          Rent and Eviction Regulations for New York City, it is

               ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, 
          granted, in part, to the extent of amending the Administrator's 
          order to revoke rent reductions granted based on findings of 
          inoperative roof door locks, elevators not levelling, an 
          inoperative elevator fan, and cracked steps.  Rent reductions 
          predicated on the failure of roof doors to close properly are 



                                                  Joseph A. D'Agosta         
                                                  Deputy Commissioner        

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