CH430212RO
                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                      DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                              JAMAICA, NEW YORK  11433


          ------------------------------------x
          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE      ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
          APPEAL OF                                DOCKET NO.: CH430212RO

                   MARTHA CHAN
                                                   RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                   DOCKET NO.: BL420061B

                                  PETITIONER
          ------------------------------------x


            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW,
                                       IN PART

          The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative 
          review of an order issued on July 27, 1988 concerning the housing 
          accommodations known as 331 East 89th Street, New York, New York, 
          wherein the Rent Commissioner determined that certain conditions 
          found in the subject premises constituted building-wide services 
          decreases.  A copy of the petition was served on the tenants.

          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 this proceeding by filing a complaint 
          asserting that the owner had failed to maintain certain services in 
          the subject building.

          In answer, the owner denied the allegations set forth in the 
          complaint or otherwise asserted that the owner was in compliance 
          with relevant Housing Maintenance Code requirements.

          Thereafter, an inspection of the subject apartment was conducted by 
          a DHCR inspector who found that the public areas were dirty and 
          unmopped, that the basement door was padlocked and chained, that 
          lighting in the public areas was inadequate and that various 
          apartments did not have fire doors.

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

















          CH430212RO

          In the petition for administrative review, the owner, in substance, 
          amplifies the contentions below, referring to Section 27-2044 of 
          the Housing Maintenance Code, pertaining to fire rating of 
          apartment doors, pointing out that it does not apply to apartments 
          on the first three (3) stories unless they have been refurbished, 
          and to Section 27-2038 & 2039 of the Code, pertaining to the level 
          of illumination required to be provided in interior public areas.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion 
          that the petition should be granted, in part, as more fully set 
          forth below.

          Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code, DHCR is 
          required to order a rent reduction upon application by a tenant, 
          where it is found that the owner has failed to maintain required 
          services.  Section 2202.16 of the City Rent and Eviction 
          Regulations provides that the Rent Administrator may order a rent 
          decrease where it is found that the owner has failed to maintain 
          essential services, which may include, but are not limited to, 
          repairs, decorating and maintenance, among other items.

          The inspection report did not indicate that any refurbished 
          apartments or any apartments located above the third story were 
          without fire doors, in violation of the Housing Maintenance Code.  
          As the record does not establish that any tenant entitled to have 
          a fire door was deprived of such services, the $5.00 per month rent 
          reduction granted to rent controlled tenants for the condition must 
          be revoked.

          The owner's petition does not establish any other basis for further 
          modifying or revoking the Administrator's order, which determined 
          that the owner was not maintaining required services based on a 
          physical inspection confirming the existence of defective 
          conditions in the subject premises for which rent reductions were 
          warranted.  The Commissioner further notes that the inspector's 
          impartial observations were entitled to, and were afforded, great 
          weight by the Rent Administrator.

          Rent arrears due the owner from rent controlled tenants as a result 
          of this order shall be paid in monthly installments equal to the 
          number of months the tenants' rent reduction was in effect.

          The DHCR records also reveal that the Rent Administrator issued an 
          order on August 15, 1990 per Docket No. DF410068OR granting the 
          owner's rent restoration application.






          The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement that resulted 






          CH430212RO

          by the filing of this petition is vacated upon issuance hereof.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code 
          and the City Rent and Eviction Laws and Regulations, it is,

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is granted in 
          part, to the extent that the Rent Administrator's order is amended 
          to revoke lack of fire doors in various apartments as a predicate 
          for rent reductions.  In all other respects, the Rent Administra- 
          tor's order is affirmed.

          ISSUED:



                                                                         
                                                    JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                    Deputy Commissioner







    

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