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
          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.: CE510022R0 
                                                                      

          Mann Realty Associates c/o              RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
          Kucker, Kraus and Bruh                  DOCKET NO.: BI430079B      
                                                     

                          PETITIONER              PREMISES:
                                                  2-4 St. Nicholas Place
                                                  New York, NY
          -----------------------------------X                           

             ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW

          The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative 
          review of an order issued on April 7, 1988 concerning the housing 
          accommodations relating to the above-described docket number.

          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 this administrative appeal.

          This proceeding was commenced on September 2, 1987 by the filing of 
          a complaint asserting that the owner had failed to maintain various 
          services in the building.

          In an answer filed on December 15, 1987, the owner submitted an 
          affidavit from its building superintendent who denied the 
          allegations in the complaint and otherwise asserted that the 
          elevator services are well-maintained (copies of service contracts 
          attached); that the light in the hallway by the mailbox has been 
          repaired; and that the hallways, sidewalk, floors and courtyard are 
          safe and clean.

          Thereafter, a physical inspection of the building was conducted on 
          February 23, 1988 by a DHCR staff member who confirmed the existence 
          of defective conditions.

          Based on the inspection, the Administrator reduced the rent as 
          follows:



          CE510022RO














          As to rent-controlled tenants:

                    1. Public hallway walls are chipped and cracked
                       throughout the subject premises.       $3.00
                    2. Public hallways throughout the subject premises
                       require cleaning.                      $3.00
                    3. Courtyard area requires cleaning.      $3.00
                    4. Elevator door stays open approximately one-and-
                       a-half inches when elevator is in motion,
                       and indicator lights are defective.    $5.00
                    5. Defective building front sidewalks.    $3.00
                    6. Defective tiles from the sixth floor
                       to the lobby.                          $1.00   
                                                   Total:    $18.00
          As to the rent stabilized tenant who signed this complaint, the rent 
          was reduced by the percentage of the most recent guidelines 
          adjustment for the tenant's lease which commenced before December 1, 
          1987, the effective date of the rent reduction of the stabilized 
          rent.

          In the petition for administrative review, the owner contends in 
          substance that the Administrator's order should be reversed because 
          (1) the petitioner did not receive any notice of inspection or the 
          results of inspection, and (2) the items cited were minor, isolated 
          occurrences arising from normal maintenance, not warranting a rent 
          reduction.

          In answer,  the tenant stated that the defective conditions were not 
          repaired and still existed.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion that 
          the petition should be denied.

          Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code, a tenant 
          may apply to DHCR for a rent reduction and DHCR shall reduce the 
          rent based on a finding that the owner is failing to maintain 
          required services. Pursuant to Section 2202.16 of the Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations, DHCR is authorized to order a rent reduction 
          approximating  the reduction in rental value as a result of a 
          decrease in essential services.

          The owner's petition fails to establish any basis to modify or 
          revoke the Administrator's determination based on the February 23, 
          1988 physical inspection which confirmed the existence of defective 
          conditions, warranting a rent reduction. 

          The Commissioner notes that the inspection results in the instant 
          case are not de minimis but serious defective conditions, warranting 
          a rent reduction.

          CE510022RO

          The defense that the owner is entitled to a notice of inspection or 
          the inspection report in the proceeding below is without merit. The 





          Commissioner notes that the tenant's complaint is sufficient notice 
          to the owner; that the owner chose not to diligently contest the 
          tenant's allegations by investigating the matter and doing necessary 
          repairs completely and effectively; that the inspection report 
          merely confirmed allegations in the complaint; and that accordingly, 
          the owner was not denied due process. (See FH410081RO; Empress Manor 
          Apartments v. DHCR, 538 N.Y.S.2d 49, 147 A.D.2d 642).

          With regard to the elevator defects, the Commissioner notes that 
          while DHCR has the requisite authority to investigate and to render 
          a determination bearing on a tenant's complaint of elevator defects, 
          DHCR recognizes that the NYC Department of Buildings has long 
          established comprehensive procedures and inspection programs in 
          place. Their staff is engaged carrying out these programs, and has 
          the necessary technical expertise to conduct periodic inspections; 
          to interpret and apply relevant codes, regulations and industry 
          standards; and to issue violations. Normally, in view of NYC's 
          greater experience with elevator enforcement, NYC is in a better 
          position than DHCR to determine appropriate performance standards 
          and ancillary equipment for elevators of varying age and 
          manufacture. In this instance, however, the DOB records do not 
          indicate that elevator inspections took place for the subject 
          building from the date the tenant filed the complaint on September 
          2, 1987 through the issue date of the rent reduction order on April 
          7, 1988. Consequently, reliance on DHCR inspection in this case is 
          warranted and is sufficient to support a determination of decreased 
          elevator services, warranting a rent reduction.

          The status of the owner's rent restoration applications is as 
          follows: CE530085OR denied on December 22, 1988, DL510149OR denied 
          on July 26, 1990, and GL430021OR granted in part to rent-controlled  
          tenants on March 31, 1994.   

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code, 
          the Rent and Eviction Regulations and Operational Bulletin 84-1, it 
          is 

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, denied, and 
          that the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby, is affirmed.


          ISSUED:


                                                                             
                                                  LULA M. ANDERSON
                                                  Deputy Commissioner











    

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