STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.: CK410020RO
45 WADSWORTH TERRACE
DOCKET NO.: BL410087B
ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW IN
PART AND MODIFYING RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S ORDER
On November 4, 1988, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a
petition for administrative review of an order issued on September
30, 1988, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodation known as 45 Wadsworth Terrace, Apt.#4C, New York, New
York, wherein the Administrator determined that certain required
services were not being provided or maintained, directed
restoration of such services, and ordered a rent reduction.
The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record and
has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the
issue raised by the administrative appeal.
The record reveals that one tenant filed a complaint on December
30, 1987 alleging a decrease in various building-wide services
including the removal of bannisters, inoperative door bell, dirty
courtyard and infestation vermin and rodents, removal of window
guards from public hallways on the second through sixth floors,
inadequate lighting at front entrance, defective fire exit door,
accumulation of garbage in incinerator rooms, and sinking floor in
In answer to the complaint, the owner asserted that all the
bannisters are in place, the door bells were not disconnected, the
courtyards are clean, window guards are in place where required,
lighting in the front entrance is not disconnected, the fire exit
door is not permitted to cannot be locked and does not have broken
glass, the incinerator rooms are not properly maintained, and the
floor in the lobby is not sinking.
A physical inspection on March 14, 1988 revealed an accumulation
of debris in the courtyard, missing window guards on the sixth
floor, two light fixtures at the front entrance door that go on in
the evening, fire exit door not defective, garbage accumulation in
the incinerator rooms, and the lobby floor had a slight slant.
A second inspection on April 29, 1988 revealed no evidence of
missing bannisters, but the door bell for apt. 4C was inoperative.
A third inspection on July 15, 1988 revealed no evidence of garbage
accumulation or infestation of vermin or rodents, one missing
window guard on the first floor, lobby light fixture was missing
cover for ballast and wires, fire door was in good condition,
garbage accumulation in the incinerator rooms, and a slight slant
in the lobby floor.
The Rent Administrator issued rent reduction orders for the one
rent stabilized tenant who filed the complaint and for all rent
controlled tenants in the building for the missing window guard on
the first floor, the missing cover on the lobby light fixture, the
garbage accumulation is the incinerator rooms and the slanted lobby
In the petition for administrative review, the owner asserts that
the rent controlled tenants were not parties to the proceeding, the
tenant did not complain about missing window guards on the first
floor or a missing light cover fixture, and the incinerator rooms
are cleaned on a daily basis and any garbage accumulation is
The petition was served on the tenant on December 6, 1988.
The tenant responded that the petition should be denied because
there are still violations outstanding.
After careful consideration of the evidence of record, the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be granted
The failure to any rent controlled tenant to join in the complaint
warrants revocation of the rent reduction for rent controlled
tenants. In the absence of even one rent controlled tenant as a
signatory of the complaint, the owner was not on notice that the
jurisdiction of the Rent Control Law was being invoked and that a
rent reduction for all rent controlled tenants in the building was
possible. This constitutes a denial of due process warranting
revocation of the rent controlled rent reduction. Accordingly, the
rent reduction for rent controlled tenants is revoked.
A review of the complaint also supports the owner's assertion that
the tenant did not complain about the absence of window guards on
the first floor or a missing cover for the lobby light fixture and
these items must be deleted from the order.
However, the record including the physical inspections, adequately
supports the Administrator's determination that the owner failed to
correct the conditions of the garbage accumulation in the incine-
rator rooms and the slanted lobby floor and for these items a rent
reduction pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code
is warranted for the complaining tenant.
The Division's record indicate that the owner's rent restoration
application was granted on April 3, 1991 (EK510074OR).
The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatements that resulted
by the filing of this petition is vacated upon the issuance of this
order and opinion.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code,
the Emergency Tenant Protection Act of 1974, and the Rent Control
Law and Regulations, it is
ORDERED, this petition be and the same hereby is granted in part
and the Rent Administrator's order be and the same hereby is
modified in accordance with this order and opinion.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA