STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL
JAMAICA, NY 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
The above-named petitioner-owner filed a timely petition for
administrative review of an order issued concerning the housing
accommodation known as 4 Gramercy Park West, 2nd Floor, New York,
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 tenant commenced the proceeding below by filing a
complaint on December 16, 1987, asserting that the owner had failed
to maintain certain services in the subject apartment.
The owner did not answer the complaint, although afforded an
opportunity to do so.
Thereafter an inspection of the subject apartment was
conducted by a DHCR inspector on July 21, 1988, who confirmed the
existence of the following defective conditions:
1. Peeling paint and plaster throughout the apartment.
2. Landlord has blocked access to the terrace from the subject
apartment by the use of a steel gate.
3. Two windows in the bedroom are painted shut.
One window in the livingroom is defective. The window runners
are broken and the window will not open.
4. The two window guards in the apartment are improperly
installed inside the windows. Guards should be outside the
windows. The window guards were installed in an unworkmanlike
manner. Guards are missing from three other windows in the
apartment. Two window guards are in the livingroom; one is
missing. No window guards are on the two windows in the
5. Roach and mice infestation in the kitchen and bathroom of the
The Rent Administrator directed restoration of these services
and further ordered a reduction of the stabilization rent.
In its petition for administrative review dated September 22,
1988, the owner states, in substance, that the conditions do not
exist, have already been remedied or are tenant created, that the
tenant refuses to give access to the apartment for repairs, has
specifically told the landlord not to make certain repairs, and
that the repairs are so de minimis in nature that they do not merit
a reduction in rent.
The DHCR served a copy of the petition on the tenant on
October 14, 1988. The tenant answered that he has never denied the
owner and/or her agents access to his apartment and that the
conditions in his original complaint still exists, have not been
remedied, has further deteriorated and was not caused by either him
or his family.
After careful consideration of the entire evidence of record,
the Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be
Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code,
DHCR is required to order the rent reduction, upon application by
the tenant, where it is found that the owner has failed to maintain
required services. The owner's petition does not establish any
basis for 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 apartment for which a rent
reduction is warranted.
The scope of review in administrative appeals is limited to a
review of facts or evidence that were before the Administrator.
The failure of the owner to answer the complaint precludes
consideration of the issues raised for the first time in this
The owner may file a rent restoration application if the facts
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 Rent Stabilization Law and
Code and the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, it is,
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is,
denied, and that the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same
hereby is, affirmed.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA