ADM. REVIEW DOCKET NOS.: CG 430040 RO ET AL.

                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                      DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                               JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

          ------------------------------------X 
          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE :  ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
          APPEALS OF                              DOCKET NOS.:              

                                                 CG 430040 RO;               
                                                 DF 410070 RT;
                                              :  DF 410071 RT;               
                                                 DF 410072 RT;
                                                 DF 410073 RT; 
              VARIOUS TENANTS, PETITIONER -      DF 420074 RT;
                               TENANTS           DF 410075 RT;            
          RONALD DE MILT, PETITIONER -           DF 410076 RT.
                               OWNER      
                                                 RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S  
                                                 DOCKET NOS.:
                                              :  BJ 410072 B;
          ------------------------------------X  CH 430138 OR               

            ORDER AND OPINION DENYING OWNER'S PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE
              REVIEW AND GRANTING TENANTS' PETITIONS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE 
               REVIEW, IN PART, TO THE EXTENT OF REMANDING RESTORATION
           PROCEEDING TO THE RENT ADMINISTRATOR FOR FURTHER CONSIDERATION

               On July 22, 1988, the above named petitioner owner filed a 
          Petition for Administrative Review (PAR) against an order issued on 
          June 17, 1988, by the Rent Administrator at Gertz Plaza, Jamaica, 
          New York, concerning the housing accommodations at 331 West 35th 
          Street, New York, New York, wherein the Administrator determined 
          the tenants' complaint of decreased building-wide services, 
          commenced on October 28, 1987.

               The order challenged by the owner reduced the tenants' rents 
          based on the results of an inspection conducted on February 22, 
          1988 that confirmed the tenants' complaints of roach and rodent 
          infestation, an inoperative building entrance night light, broken 
          stairway steps between landings, holes in linoleum on landings and 
          stairs, and a building facade requiring repairs.

               The above referenced petitioner-tenants filed timely PARs 
          against the order issued on May 10, 1989, wherein the Rent 
          Administrator determined the owner's application filed on August 
          10, 1988, to restore the rent previously reduced on June 17, 1988 
          per Docket No. BJ 410072 B, above.















          ADM. REVIEW DOCKET NOS.: CG 430040 RO ET AL.

               The order challenged by the tenants restored the tenants' 
          rents to the pre-reduction levels based on evidence in the file, 
          including an inspection held on March 17, 1989 that indicated that 
          the conditions that gave rise to the rent reductions had been 
          corrected or were being addressed.    

               The owner's appeal of the rent reduction order is denied.  
          Repairs and items of normal maintenance should have been resolved 
          within the four (4) month period between the commencement of the 
          rent reduction proceedings and the inspection.  The owner's 
          assertion of repairs and adequate periodic maintenance and 
          exterminating were belied by the February 22, 1988 inspection.  In 
          fact, the inspection revealed the owner's then measures to have 
          been inadequate. 

               The tenants' petitions are granted to the extent of remanding 
          the proceedings to the Administrator for further consideration of 
          the issue of facade repairs.

               As to the facade, the Administrator determined that rent 
          restoration was warranted based on the submission by the owner of 
          a copy of proposal, dated April 22, 1989, to repair the brownstone 
          facade, a copy of an uncancelled check to the contractor dated 
          April 23, 1989, and a statement signed by several tenants, also 
          dated April 23, 1989, to the effect that repairs were under way.  

               The tenants alleged, the owner acknowledged, and the inspector 
          confirmed that the brownstone facade was worn.  The owner's 
          argument throughout the proceedings that the facade was 
          weatherbeaten but structurally sound brownstone is not compelling.  
          The condition affects more than the cosmetic appearance of the 
          building; it indicates a deterioration of the facade with possible 
          impairment of the structural integrity of the building.    

               The Commissioner also concurs with the tenants' suggestion on 
          appeal that the record failed to establish that the owner had 
          completed repairs to the facade in a workmanlike manner.  Moreover, 
          the documentation submitted by the owner established that the 
          facade repairs had not even been commenced when the rent 
          restoration application was filed.  

               On remand, the Administrator should determine, based on 
          another physical inspection, whether the repairs to the facade have 
          been completed and, depending on the results of the inspection, 
          either revoke the rent restoration order, or issue a new order 
          modifying the effective date of the restoration to a date no 
          earlier than May 1, 1989, the date the owner's evidence indicates 
          repairs were commenced. 


               The Administrator's finding that there was no further evidence 
          of infestation is affirmed.  The determination was based on the 






          ADM. REVIEW DOCKET NOS.: CG 430040 RO ET AL.

          results of an inspection.  The inspector was not a party to the 
          proceedings and not an adversary to either the owner or the 
          tenants.  The Administrator properly afforded substantial weight to 
          the inspector's observations.

               The Administrator also properly determined, based on the 
          tenants' statement of April 23, 1987, that the entrance night light 
          was operating. 

               THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent 
          Stabilization Law and Code, the Rent and Eviction Regulations, 
          Chapter 403 of the Laws of 1983 and Chapter 102 of the Laws of 
          1984, it is

               ORDERED, that the owner's petition be and the same hereby is 
          denied, and that the Administrator's rent reduction order be and 
          the same hereby is affirmed.  It is further

               ORDERED, that the tenants' petitions be and the same hereby 
          are granted in part, to the extent of remanding the rent 
          restoration proceedings to the Administrator for further 
          consideration in accordance with this order and opinion of the 
          issue of facade repairs only.  In other respects, the 
          Administrator's order is affirmed.  The automatic stay of so much 
          of the Rent Administrator's order as directed retroactive rent 
          restoration is hereby continued until a new order is issued upon 
          remand.  However, the Administrator's determination as to the 
          prospective rent restoration is not stayed and shall remain in 
          effect pending the issuance of a new order upon remand. 

          ISSUED:


                                                                        
                                          JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                          Acting Deputy Commissioner




                                                    







    

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