DB 210057 RO

                                  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. DB 210057 RO

                                              :  DISTRICT RENT OFFICE
               691 Union Street Corp.,           DOCKET NO. BB 210229 R
               (Rudy Kats)                       
                                                 TENANT: George Perry and    
                                                              Kathy Spence

                                PETITIONER    : 
          ------------------------------------X                             

            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
                                       IN PART


          On February 13, 1989, the above-named owner filed a Petition for 
          Administrative Review against an order issued on January 11, 1989, 
          by the Rent Administrator in Jamaica, concerning the housing 
          accommodations known as 691 Union Street, Brooklyn, New York, 
          Apartment No. 3L, wherein the Administrator determined that the 
          above-named tenants had been overcharged by $7,010.80 (including 
          excessive security deposited and interest).

          This proceeding originated with the tenants' Complaint of Rent 
          Overcharge, which stated that they had moved into the subject 
          apartment in February of 1987, at a rental of $567.38 monthly, 
          whereas the rent in early 1986 had been $251.90.  In answer the 
          owner stated that the "first lease" of the subject apartment had 
          been entered into with "Mr. Greenberg on 9-15-86: a two-year lease 
          at a monthly rent of $497.92," and that after Greenberg had broken 
          that lease, the apartment had been rented to the complainants 
          herein.

          On August 24, 1988, and again on September 21 of that year, the 
          Administrator asked the owner for documentation of the 
          aforementioned rental history; the record contains no response to 
          that request.  The Administrator also requested further information 
          from the tenants, who responded with a copy of their second lease 
          for the subject apartment, and with the statement that they had 
          vacated same on April 25, 1988.


          The aforementioned order -- determining the tenants' first lawful 
          rent to have been $296.91 and calculating an overcharge through 












          DB 210057 RO

          January 31, 1989 -- ensued, the Administrator stating therein that 
          because the owner had failed to submit the requested previous 
          tenant's lease, the previous-rental figure used in the order 
          ($265.95) had come from rent-registration records.

          The petition herein, supplemented by a submission from the new 
          owner of the premises, makes two points: that the aforementioned 
          Greenberg lease was indeed executed; and that the tenants herein 
          "broke the renewal lease in February of 1988; the apartment 
          remained vacant for 12 months and the landlord is suing them" for 
          that reason.

          The Commissioner is of the opinion that this petition should be 
          granted in part.

          The Administrator's calculations include no Greenberg lease for 
          $497.92 for a simple reason: no substantiation of same was 
          presented to him.  The Commissioner's task on appeal is equally 
          simple, for petitioner's mere reiteration of the purported details 
          of that tenancy obviously provides no reason to upset the 
          Administrator's determination.  In addition, it is noted that 
          although the new owner subsequently submitted a copy of the 
          Greenberg lease, such lease cannot be considered for the first time 
          on appeal since this is not a de novo proceeding.  Moreover such 
          lease refers to apartment 1L whereas the subject apartment is 
          apartment 3L.

          The other ground of this appeal clearly implies that the 
          Administrator should not have calculated twelve months of 
          overcharge for a tenancy that was much shorter, and less clearly, 
          that amounts the tenants may owe under the lease in question should 
          be used to offset that overcharge.

          There was no basis for calculating twelve months of overcharge for 
          a renewal lease period that all agree lasted no more than two 
          months and 25 days, so the Administrator's determination must be 
          adjusted.  As to the amount of that adjustment, although the 
          petition says the tenants "broke" the lease "in February" of 1988, 
          there is no explicit statement that they ceased paying rent at that 
          time and no denial that they vacated on April 25.  In recalculating 
          the overcharge, then, the Commissioner will deem the rent to have 
          been paid through April; nine months of the assessed overcharge 
          will therefore be removed, leaving a revised overcharge under the 
          second lease of $805.74 plus $60.43 in accrued interest (through 
          the date of the Administrator's order).  Adding those amounts to 
          their counterparts under the tenants' first lease, and further 
          adding $268.58 in excessive security deposited, yields a total 
          refund of $4517.68.
          (To the extent that the present owner's submission can be read as 
          asking the Commissioner to offset against the overcharge, rents 
          owed under the lease broken by the tenants, the Commissioner would 
          point out that the instant determination is without prejudice to 






          DB 210057 RO

          any remedy the owner may seek in court against the tenant).

          Because this determination concerns lawful rents only through April 
          30, 1988, the owner is cautioned to adjust subsequent rents to an 
          amount no greater than that determined by this order plus any 
          lawful increases, and to register any adjusted rents with this 
          order and opinion being given as the explanation for the 
          adjustment.

          This order may, upon the expiration of the period in which the 
          owner may institute a proceeding pursuant to Article 78 of the 
          Civil Practice Law and Rules, be filed and enforced in the same 
          manner as a judgment.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code, 
          it is

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted to 
          the extent set forth above, modifying the Administrator's order by 
          changing the overcharge found therein to the aforementioned 
          $4517.68.



          ISSUED:



                                                                        
                                          JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                          Acting Deputy Commissioner










    

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