STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NY 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
Bo Hing Realty Corp.,
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On November 21, 1989, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a
petition for administrative review of an order issued on November
2, 1989, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing
accommodations known as 118 Madison Street, New York, New York,
various apartments, wherein the Administrator determined that a
reduction in rent was warranted based upon a reduction in services.
The Rent Administrator also directed full restoration of services.
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 the administrative appeal.
The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly reduced
the rent of various apartments in the subject building.
On December 16, 1988, the tenants filed a complaint alleging that
the owner failed to maintain services in the subject building.
The owner filed an answer to the complaint alleging, in pertinent
part, that the tenants' complaint is baseless, without merit and
that the complaint was registered as retribution for a Major
Capital Improvement (MCI) rent increase granted by the DHCR.
A DHCR inspection conducted on October 16, 1989, revealed that:
1. All public areas including back yard are filthy and there
is a severe stench in the building due to the ground
floor restaurant. There is broken lumber on the fifth
floor, large oil cans block access to the roof, and back
yard contains restaurant refuse and rotted lumber. Also,
live poultry are harbored on premises at time of
2. Five(5) mailbox doors are broken.
3. Roach and rat infestation.
4. Fire escape (rear) is rusted.
5. Building entrance door lock is inoperative.
6. Back door and its lock are defective and door is kept
7. The bell and buzzer system is inoperative.
THE FOLLOWING SERVICES WERE FOUND TO BE MAINTAINED:
1. The superintendent identification sign is posted.
2. The vestibule door and lock are adequate.
The tenant may contact the NYC Board of Health Department for
the issue of live poultry in the backyard.
On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted, in pertinent part, that
the tenants' complaint was filed as retribution because it was
granted an MCI increase by the DHCR; that the building was
subjected to a series of vandalous acts; that the inspector's
findings were flawed because certain deficiencies were corrected
and others were non-existent.
The petition was served on the tenants on March 16, 1990, and on
April 3, 1990, the tenants filed an answer to the petition stating
that the owner had not fully restored services.
After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal
should be denied.
Pursuant to Section 2523.4 (a) of the Rent Stabilization Code, a
tenant may apply to the Division of Housing and Community Renewal
(DHCR) for a reduction of the legal regulated rent to the level in
effect prior to the most recent guideline adjustment, and the DHCR
shall so reduce the rent for the period for which it is found that
the owner has failed to maintain required services.
Required services are defined in Section 2520.6(r) to include
repairs and maintenance.
The Commissioner has considered and rejects the owner's argument
that the tenants caused the service deficiencies specified in the
The record clearly demonstrates that the Division conducted an
inspection on October 16, 1989, which showed many service
The record is absent any evidence that the tenants wilfully caused
the service deficiencies specified in the inspection report.
The Commissioner also finds that the Administrator properly based
his determination on the entire record, including the results of
the on-site physical inspection conducted on October 16, 1989 and
that pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Code, the Administrator
was mandated to reduce the rent upon determining that the owner had
failed to maintain services.
The Commissioner finds, therefore, that the owner has offered
insufficient reason to disturb the Rent Administrator's
The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement that resulted
by the filing of the owner's petition is vacated upon issuance of
this order and opinion.
The Commissioner notes that the owner filed four consecutive
applications for rent restoration which were denied by the Rent
Administrator and that a fifth application is pending under Docket
THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent
Stabilization Law and Code, 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,
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA