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.: DJ420235RO
: RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
DOCKET NO.: CJ420369S
Norman Silver c/o
Walter & Samuels Inc. :
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On October 29, 1989,the above-named petitioner-owner filed a petition for
administrative review of an order issued on October 16, 1989, by the Rent
Administrator, concerning the housing accommodation known as 121 West 72nd
Street, New York, N.Y. Apt. 6-D, wherein the Administrator determined that
the maximum legal rent for the subject rent controlled apartment should be
reduced by $2.00 per month based upon a diminution of services.
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 issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly reduced the rent
of the subject rent controlled apartment by $2.00 per month based upon a
diminution of service.
On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted that although storage space has been
provided to all tenants in the past, there is no new storage space available
The petition was served on the tenant on February 20, 1990, and in an answer
dated February 27, 1990, the tenant stated that the landlord stopped
providing storage space years ago, that his statement reconfirms this, and
that the owner has not complied with the order to restore this service.
In a reply dated March 14, 1990, the owner stated that management had not
taken away existing storage space but additional space cannot be provided due
to lack of room. The owner invited DHCR to inspect.
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record, the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal should be
On October 13, 1988, the tenant filed an Individual Tenant Statement of
Complaint of Decrease in Services alleging that he was being deprived of
storage space access.
In answer to the complaint, the owner stated that storage space has been
allocated on an available basis and at the present time, no further storage
space is available to any tenants.
For rent controlled tenants, Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Eviction
Regulations provides that a finding that an owner has failed to maintain
services may result in an order of decrease in maximum rent, in an amount
determined by the discretion of the Rent Administrator. No request for a
rent reduction is required.
The Commissioner has considered the owner's argument on appeal that there was
no reduction in storage space services and rejects same.
The owner has not stated that the complaining tenant never had storage space
nor does he contend that such space has been restored to the tenant.
In an attempt to clarify the situation, the Commissioner arranged for the
premises to be inspected, with notice to both parties. The inspector was
instructed to ascertain the size and location of any storage space, how
access to it is obtained, and whether all available space is being fully
The inspector visited the premises on January 28, 1993, and reported that the
super was present but was unable to grant access to the basement where the
storage space is purportedly located. The super advised that the key is held
by the Co-op Board Director.
Based on the owner's failure to cooperate with the Division in arranging for
the inspector to obtain access to the storage area, the Commissioner as of
the opinion that the owner's petition should be denied.
In accordance with authority provided by Section 2202.16, the Administrator
ordered an appropriate rent reduction to reflect the decreased rental value
of the subject housing accommodations because of the elimination of storage
space which the owner does not dispute was a service provided to the tenant
on the base date. The Administrator also properly directed the owner to
restore this service.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent and Eviction
Regulations for New York City, it is
ORDERED that this petition be, and the same hereby is, denied and the
Administrator's order be, and the same hereby is, affirmed.
The tenant is advised to commence noncompliance proceedings against the owner
if the owner fails to restore storage space services.
Upon a restoration of services the owner may separately apply for a rent
Joseph A. D'Agosta