Adm. Rev. Docket No: DH 230390-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.: DH 230390 RO 
                                            :  
             MARTIN GELFAND,                :  DISTRICT RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                            :  DOCKET NO.: DJ 230032-B  
                              PETITIONER    : 
        ------------------------------------X                           
          
           ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
              IN PART AND REMANDING PROCEEDINGS TO THE ADMINISTRATOR 
                             FOR FURTHER CONSIDERATION

        On August 1, 1989, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a Petition 
        for Administrative Review against an order issued on July  6,  1989,
        by the  Rent  Administrator  at  Gertz  Plaza,  Jamaica,  New  York,
        concerning the housing accommodation  known  as  3096  Brighton  6th
        Street, Brooklyn, New York wherein  the  Administrator  granted  the
        tenants' request  for  rent  reduction  based  on  a  finding  of  a
        reduction of building-wide services.  

        The issue  in  these  proceedings  is  whether  the  Administrator's
        determination was proper.

        The  applicable  law  Section  2520.6(r)  and  2523.4  of  the  Rent
        Stabilization Code and  Section  2202.16  of  the  Rent  &  Eviction
        Regulations.

        The tenants initiated the proceedings on October 14, 1988 by  filing
        a joint complaint of a reduction  of  building-wide  services.   The
        tenants alleged that the elevator worked only sporadically and  that
        it was out of operation several weeks at a time.

        The owner was served with  a  copy  of  the  tenants'  complaint  on
        October 28, 1988.

        In a supplement filed on  November  9,  1988  an  additional  tenant
        complained that the backyard and incinerator areas were not cleaned. 
        However, there is no evidence in the record that  the  Administrator
        notified the owner of this additional complaint.

        An inspection was conducted on May 15, 1989,  by  a  member  of  the
        Division's  inspection  staff.   The  inspector  reported  that  the
        elevator was in poor condition and that it bounced when stopping.
        The inspector also found that the incinerator needed to  be  cleaned
        and that the backyard and  side  of  the  building  were  dirty  and
        littered with papers and other material.

        On July 6, 1989, the Administrator issued orders reducing the  rents
        for rent controlled apartments  by  $7.00  based  on  findings  that
        exterior areas and the incinerator rooms  were  filthy  ($3.00)  and
        that the elevator was in poor condition and bounced when it  stopped
        ($4.00).  The rents for the rent stabilized apartment  were  reduced







        Adm. Rev. Docket No: DH 230390-RO
        by the percentage of the most recent guideline adjustment  for  each
        tenants' base which commenced before the effective date of the  rent
        reductions, November 1, 1988.

        As the rent regulated status  for  the  units  was  not  known,  the
        tenants were advised to abide by the  portion  of  the  order  (Rent
        Control Law or Rent Stabilization Law) applicable to them.

        In  the  petition,  the  owner  requests  that  the  Administrator's
        determination be reversed.  The petitioner points out that the  rent
        reductions granted for the  filthy  incinerator  room  and  exterior
        areas were  not  listed  in  the  complaint.   With  regard  to  the
        elevator, the petitioner argues that while  the  tenants'  complaint
        cited a lack of service, the elevator was in service at the time  of
        inspection.  The petitioner also argues that  the  finding  of  poor
        elevator service and that the elevator bounced at floor  stops  were
        not valid grounds for rent reductions.     

        After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion that 
        the petition should be granted in part.

        The record confirms that the  owner  did  not  have  notice  of  the
        tenant's complaint of filthy conditions  in  some  areas  until  the
        Administrator's orders issued.

        Concerning the elevator, the Commissioner finds that the inspector's 
        report that the elevator was in poor condition  was  too  vague  and
        conclusory  to  provide   the   Administrator   specific   findings,
        reflecting  examination,  testing  and  observation,  sufficient  to
        permit  the  Administrator  to  ascertain  if  there  were   service
        reductions warranting rent reductions.  As to the inspector's report 
        that the elevator bounced when it came to a stop,  the  Commissioner
        is of the opinion that the condition described  is  insufficient  to
        ascertain  whether  the  condition  was  hazardous  or  whether  the
        delivery of elevator service to the tenants was affected.

        It would be a denial of due process to impose rent reductions  where
        the owner has not been notified of items requiring attention,  given
        the opportunity to correct the condition or  to  assert  that  there
        have been no service  reductions,  or  notified  only  in  the  most
        general sense, but insufficient to inform the  owner  of  conditions
        requiring correction.

        Notwithstanding the above, the inspection revealed the existence  of
        conditions requiring the owner's attention, warranting a  remand  to
        the Administrator for further consideration.

        On remand, the Administrator shall ascertain whether the owner 
        promptly addressed the conditions observed.  Subject to the above, 








        Adm. Rev. Docket No: DH 230390-RO
        the Administrator shall redetermine the effective dates for 
        the rent reduction, or alternatively revoke the rent reductions,  as
        the facts may warrant.

        Additionally, the Administrator shall ascertain the  correct  status
        each of the affected rent-controlled and rent-stabilized tenants.

        THEREFORE, in accordance with the applicable provisions of the  Rent
        Stabilization Law and Code, the Emergency Tenant Protection  Act  of
        1974, the Rent and Eviction Regulations for the City  of  New  York,
        Chapter 403, Laws of 1983, as amended by Chapter 102, Laws of  1984,
        it is

        ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby  is  granted  to
        the extent of remanding  these  proceedings  to  the  District  Rent
        Administrator for further processing in accordance with  this  order
        and  opinion.   The  automatic  stay  of  so  much   of   the   Rent
        Administrator's order as directed a retroactive  rent  abatement  is
        hereby continued until a new order is issued  on  remand.   However,
        the Administrator's determination as to a prospective rent abatement 
        is not stayed and shall remain in effect until  the  Administrator's
        order issues a new order upon remand.

        ISSUED:




                                                                      
                                        ELLIOT SANDER
                                        Deputy Commissioner


    

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