STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433
------------------------------------X S.J.R. NO.: 6886
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE : ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.: DK430046RO
HARRY SILBER RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
DOCKET NO.: BG4101240M
ORDER AND OPINION REMANDING PROCEEDING ON APPEAL
The above-named petitioner-owner timely filed a petition for
administrative review against an order issued on September 28, 1989
by the Rent Administrator, (Gertz Plaza) concerning the housing
accommodations known as 1601 and 1603 York Avenue, New York, New
York, various apartments.
Subsequent thereto, the petitioner-owner filed a petition in the
Supreme Court pursuant to Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and
Rules requesting that the Court direct the Division to
expeditiously determine the petitioner's administrative appeal.
The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record and
has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the
issues raised by the administrative appeal.
The owner commenced the proceeding below on July 23, 1987 by filing
an application to increase the rents for the stabilized and
controlled apartments based on the installation of "two new
In response to the owner's application, several tenants alleged, in
substance, that the work was only cosmetic; the owner and not the
tenants should bear the cost of the work; the repairs were due to
inferior maintenance; and the doorbells no longer worked as a
result of the installation.
On September 28, 1989 the Rent Administrator issued the order here
under review, denying the owner's application and finding that the
installations did not qualify as a major capital improvement (MCI),
but were considered as repairs and maintenance.
In his petition, the owner, through his attorney, contends, in
substance, that new front and vestibule doors are specifically
listed as a major capital improvement under Section 2522.4(a)(i)(2)
and (3) of the Rent Stabilization Code; that pursuant to Section
2522.4(a)(ii), the additional installation of flooring, buzzer
system, ceilings, and indoor and outdoor lighting fixtures is work
performed in conjunction with and integral to the installation of
the doors which also qualifies as an MCI.
ADMIN. REVIEW DOCKET NO.: DK430046RO
In response to the owner's petition, the tenants reiterate their
earlier claims made in opposition to the owner's MCI application,
including the loss of their individual doorbell service during the
installation of the intercom system, and add that the new doors are
difficult to open from the inside and are not secure.
The Commissioner is of the opinion that this proceeding should be
remanded to the Rent Administrator for further processing.
The evidence of the record in the instant case indicates that the
owner described the improvements in his MCI application as "2
complete new lobbies" which included 4 new glass doors and 4 new
transom, new oak walls, new terra cotta floors, new lights and new
buzzer system. Notwithstanding the use of the all encompassing
term "lobbies" to describe the subject installations, the
Commissioner finds that some of the underlying items which were
installed, such as building entrance and vestibule doors, may
qualify as an MCI warranting a rent increase. Accordingly, the
Commissioner finds that the Rent Administrator incorrectly denied
the owner's application without first examining each of the
underlying items which were encompassed in the new lobby
Based on the foregoing, the Commissioner deems it appropriate to
remand this proceeding to the Administrator to determine what
items, if any, qualify as MCI's and the corresponding cost for each
THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent
Stabilization Law and Code and the Rent and Eviction Regulations
for New York City, it is
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is granted to
the extent of remanding this proceeding to the Rent Administrator
for further processing in accordance with this order and opinion.
The Rent Administrator's order is hereby revoked.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA