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   ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE     DOCKET NO.:  EA110242RT
          APPEAL OF                               EB110362RT,  EE130208RT
                   VARIOUS TENANTS OF
                   89-07 169TH STREET
                   JAMAICA, NEW YORK             RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                  PETITIONERS    DOCKET NO:   DA130117OM 
          ------------------------------------X

            ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITIONS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW

          On various dates the above-named petitioner-tenants timely filed   
          and refiled administrative appeals against an order issued on 
          January 19, 1990, by the Rent Administrator 92-31 Union Hall 
          Street, Jamaica, New York concerning the housing accommodations 
          known as 89-07 169th Street, Jamaica, New York, various apartments, 
          wherein the Rent Administrator determined that the owner was 
          entitled to a rent increase based on the installation of a major 
          capital improvement (MCI).

          The Commissioner deems it appropriate to consolidate these 
          petitions for disposition since they pertain to the same order and 
          involve common issues of law and fact.

          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 these administrative appeals.

          The owner commenced this proceeding on January 31, 1989 by 
          initially filing an application for a rent increase based on  
          repiping and bathroom modernization at a total cost of $173,747.54.

          Nineteen tenants responded with specificity to the owner's MCI 
          application claiming, in substance, the following:  low water 
          pressure; newly installed vanities and toilets are too small; the 
          bathtub and shower were not replaced; there are cracks in the 
          bathroom tile; the sewer pipes were not replaced; and miscellaneous 
          other items of complaints related to the plumbing.
            
          In response to these complaints the owner provided sixteen signed 
          acknowledgements from tenants of corrective repairs having been 
          made to their apartments and affidavits by the owner to the effect 
          that remaining apartments were inspected and the equipment found to 
          be in working order.  













            ADMIN.  REVIEW DOCKET NO.:  EA110242RT  et.  al.

            A physical inspection of the subject premises occurred on 
            December 28 and December 29, 1989 wherein the inspector found 
            deficiencies in the bathroom tile work for apartments 1-G, 1-K, 
            2-F, 5-L and 6-E; and that the sink in Apt. 3-B had not been 
            replaced. 

            On January 19, 1990, the Rent Administrator issued the order 
            (Docket No. AD630168OM) here under review, finding that the 
            repiping and bathroom modernization qualified as MCIs, 
            determining that the application to that extent complied with 
            the relevant laws and regulations based upon the supporting 
            documentation submitted by the owner, and allowing rent 
            increases for rent controlled and rent stabilized tenants.  
            Noted therein were temporary rent increase exemptions for Apts. 
            1-G, 1-K, 2-F, 3-B, 5-L, 6-E based on DHCR's earlier 
            inspections. 

            In the petition (EE130208RT) filed by the tenant of apartment 
            5-K on his own behalf and various tenants it is alleged, in 
            substance, the following: the old toilets and sinks were 
            functional and their replacement unnecessary; the new toilets 
            and sinks are smaller and not comparable to the old ones; that 
            although the tenants were ordered to remove their washing 
            machines due to the deteriorated plumbing condition no 
            improvement occurred from the new plumbing work; the 
            installations have resulted in a decrease in service; and that 
            an inspection should be performed to determine the validity of 
            their complaints.

            The tenant of apartment 3-C, (EB110362RT), and the tenants of 
            apartments 2-M and 4-M, (EA110242RT), in their petitions 
            contend in substance, the following:  (Apt. 3-C) that a 
            bathroom vanity was not installed in his apartment; that the 
            owner's application failed to list apartment 1-H, a doctor's 
            office, as either commercial or professional; that no rent 
            increase should be imposed since his November 1988 lease 
            expired without a lease renewal being offered; and that the 
            owner failed to file the annual rent registration for 1989 and 
            is thereby further barred from collecting any rent increases. 
            (Apts. 2-M and 4-M) that the amount of pipes replaced was 
            minimal; that repeated flushing is necessary at all times; the 
            bathroom modernization failed to include the walls and floors, 
            the latter being in a deteriorated condition; that towel 
            holders were either removed and not replaced and or remain 
            broken.  Various allegations presented in Tenants' Association 
            petition are reiterated in the above individually filed 
            tenant's petition.

                                          2









            ADMIN.  REVIEW DOCKET NO.:  EA110242RT  et.  al.

            The owner responded to each petition separately and states, in 
            substances, the following: the old pedestal sinks were 50 years 
            old and wasted space in contrast to the new sinks and vanity 
            tops which, although smaller, hold about the same amount of 
            water and provides storage space; the tenants' leases contain 
            a provision precluding the use of washing machines and no 
            promises were made to tenants concerning the use of their 
            washing machines following the repiping; new vanities were 
            installed in all apartments including apartment 3-C; Apt. 1-H 
            is a legal rent stabilized apartment, registered annually, 
            however it is being used as a professional office by a doctor; 
            renewal leases were offered to the tenant of apartment 3-C; the 
            subject premises is registered for 1989 (proof of registration 
            was attached); the tenants were afforded  an opportunity to 
            object to the MCI application prior to the rent increase taking 
            effect; the bathroom modernization was an improvement 
            benefitting the tenants; and the petition filed for apartment 
            4-M lists an individual who is not a tenant of said unit. 

            After a careful consideration of the entire record the 
            Commissioner is of the opinion these petitions should be  
            denied.   

            It is the established position of the division that the 
            installation of new copper plumbing an a building-wide basis as 
            well the installation of new bathroom equipment performed in 
            conjunction therewith, is a major capital improvement for which 
            a rent increase adjustment may be warranted, if the owner 
            otherwise so qualifies.

            A review of the record in this proceeding discloses that the 
            scope of the repiping work as described in the plumbing 
            contract (Parkset Plumbing Inc, Co.) more than satisfied the 
            minimum requirement prescribed by DHCR for this type of 
            installation.  The record further discloses that the owner 
            submitted to the Administrator various substantiating 
            documentation including copies of the contract, contractor's 
            certification, cancel checks and governmental sign-off from the 
            agency having jurisdiction thereof.

            The Administrator's order was issued after a physical 
            inspection and review of tenant objections to the application.  
            In this connection the Commissioner notes that an attempt was 
            made to inspect apartment 5-K and the tenant advised that he 
            had "no complaints" with respect to the subject installations; 
            and that the tenants of apartments 3-C, 2-M and 4-M failed to 
            respond or raise any material objection to the owner's 
            application, although afforded the opportunity to do so.  


            ADMIN.  REVIEW DOCKET NO.  EA110242RT













            Fundamental principals of the administrative appeal process 
            precludes a party from raising on appeal issues for the first 
            time on appeal which could have been raised before the 
            Administrator. 

            Nevertheless, the Commissioner deems it appropriate to note 
            that the gravamen of the tenants' complaints appear to pertain 
            to size of the newly installed bathroom fixtures.  In this 
            respect the Division has recognized that a bathroom vanity 
            (which affords additional storage space) may be installed in 
            lieu of a sink; and that the smaller toilet tanks appear 
            consistent with the generally accepted public policy of 
            conserving water resources.

            The records of the Division show that apartment 1-H has been 
            registered with the Division as a stabilized unit on an annual 
            basis and that the rental value of such apartment is such as to 
            not materially impact upon the Administrator's determination 
            and the rent increase provided for therein.  Moreover, a review 
            of Division records confirm that the subject premises including 
            apartment 3-C was and is registered with the Division.       

            The records of the Division further discloses that various 
            services complaints filed by tenants shortly after the 
            Administrator's order was issued were found not to warrant 
            relief and the report of a physical inspection conducted on 
            July 25, 1991, with respect to apartment 6-E, disclosed that 
            the toilet flushes properly, the bathroom sink is properly 
            mounted and does not leak; and that water pressure throughout 
            the apartment is adequate.

            Based upon the entire record, the Commissioner finds that the 
            Administrator's order is correct and should be affirmed.

            The owner is hereby directed to install a new bathroom vanity 
            in apartment 3-C, if it has not already done so, and the 
            determination herein is without prejudice to the right of the 
            tenants or any one of them filing an appropriate complaint with 
            the Division based on the owner's failure to maintain services, 
            if the facts now so warrant.

            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






            ADMIN.  REVIEW DOCKET NO. EA110242RT

            ORDERED, that these petitions for administrative review be, and 
            the same hereby are denied; and that Administrator's order be; 






            and the same hereby is affirmed.  Tenants who owe the 
            retroactive portion of the rent increase which was stayed by 
            the filing of these petitions for Administrative Review may pay 
            such retroactive increase in installments from the issuance 
            hereof subject to the terms and restrictions on collectibility 
            contained in the Administrator's order.

            ISSUED:



                                                                          
                                                    JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                    Deputy Commissioner































    

TenantNet Home | TenantNet Forum | New York Tenant Information
DHCR Information | DHCR Decisions | Housing Court Decisions | New York Rent Laws
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us

Subscribe to our Mailing List!
Your Email      Full Name