DOC. NO.: FC 410478-RT
           
                                 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.: FC 410478-RT
                        JOHN MIGITZ              DRO DOCKET NOS. EE-110059-OR
                      BEATRICE MIGITZ,       :                   QS-003294-S
                              PETITIONERS    :   OWNER: DAVID PRAVDA
         ------------------------------------X          KEY PARTNERS CO.


            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW,
                      AND REMANDING PROCEEDING TO ADMINISTRATOR

         On March 28, 1991, the above-named petitioner-tenants filed a Petition 
         for Administrative Review against an order issued on March 4, 1991 by 
         the Rent Administrator, 92-31 Union Hall Street, Jamaica, New York 
         concerning the housing accommodations known as Apartment B, 68-24 B 
         140th Street, Kew Gardens, New York wherein the Administrator 
         determined that the owner had corrected the conditions necessitating 
         the March 21, 1988 order reducing the rent of the subject 
         accommodations, and restored rent effective June 1, 1990.

         The issue in this appeal is whether the Rent Administrator's order 
         was warranted.

         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.

         This proceeding was commenced by the filing, under Docket No. QS- 
         003294-S, of an Individual Tenant Statement of Complaint in which 
         the tenants stated that their wiring was very bad and rotted; that 
         the apartment windows were warped; and that water pressure was bad, 
         with leaking faucets.

         On September 20, 1985, in answer to the tenant's complaint, the then 
         owner advised that all necessary repairs had been made.

         An inspection was held at the subject apartment on October 18, 1985, 
         which disclosed that the insulation of the wires was rotted, and the 
         bathroom window sash did not open.  As a result, based upon this 
         physical inspection, the District Rent Administrator, in Order 
         Number QS-003294-S determined that service decreases had occurred in 
         the subject apartment, and reduced the rent effective October 1, 
         1985.














          DOC. NO.: FC 410478-RT

         On April 4, 1986 the tenant filed an affirmation of non-compliance 
         with the Division, and a non-compliance proceeding was commenced.

         Based on advice from the tenant that the property had a new owner, 
         the Division contacted the building agent and was informed of the 
         name and address of the new owner on March 28, 1989.

         By letter dated March 31, 1989, a copy of the order issued against 
         the prior owner was forwarded to the current owner, who was advised 
         to comply with such order, and that failure to comply would result 
         in punitive action against the current owner.  On April 28, 1989 an 
         interim compliance order was issued, directing the current owner to 
         effectuate the necessary repairs, and to certify to this agency that 
         the repairs had been completed within twenty days.

         Following an allegation by the tenants that the owner had not 
         complied, a hearing was held on July 20, 1989, and on August 1, 1989 
         the Commissioner found that the owner had not complied with the 
         Division's prior order by failing to make repairs to various 
         defective windows and the defective wiring in the apartment.  The 
         owner was fined $500.00 and directed to make the repairs forthwith.

         Following further information from the tenant that the wiring had 
         not been repaired, on June 12, 1990, and July 20, 1990, a D.H.C.R. 
         inspector conducted compliance proceeding pre-hearing inspections 
         which found that the wiring in the apartment was dry, brittle and 
         crumbling in dining room, bedroom, and kitchen ceiling and outlets.  
         The outlets and fixtures were working at the time of the inspection.  
         The inspection further reported a possible fire hazardous condition.

         By order dated December 5, 1990, following a hearing on September 
         11, 1990, the Commissioner found that the credible evidence of 
         record revealed that the owner had still not repaired defective 
         wiring at the ceiling fixtures in the dining room, bedroom and 
         kitchen.  The owner was assessed a penalty of $1000.00, and directed 
         to comply with the directives of the order.

         During the pendency of the compliance proceeding, on May 2, 1990 the 
         owner filed an Application to Restore Rent under Docket No. EE 
         110059-OR, claiming that it had restored all services for which the 
         rent reduction order was issued.









         In response, the tenant stated that the electrician did not remove 
         any fixtures to check the wiring; that there have been a few fires 




          DOC. NO.: FC 410478-RT
         in the development due to the faulty wiring; that if wiring is 
         damaged and dried up inside the fixtures and switches, this is not 
         "livable" as stated by the owner.

         The tenant was sent a notice of inspection to be conducted on 
         January 22, 1991, which was rescheduled by the Division for January 
         25, 1991, because the tenants were not present.  The Division's 
         records indicate that the tenant phoned from Florida on January 25, 
         1991, stating that the notice had been forwarded to her in Florida, 
         where she was staying for an eye operation, and that she would 
         return in March, 1991.

         On March 4, 1991, the Administrator restored the rent effective June 
         1, 1990, based on the tenants' failure to keep the January 1991 
         inspection appointments.

         In their petition for administrative review, the tenants submitted 
         a photocopy of a Miami Florida medical/hospital bill for optometric 
         services performed on February 25, 1991, and requested reversal of 
         the order.  The tenants contend that the inspector agreed to await 
         their return to New York.

         The Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be 
         granted.

         Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code states, in pertinent 
         part, that a tenant may apply to the DHCR for a reduction of the 
         legal regulated rent to the level in effect prior to the most recent 
         guidelines 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.

         The evidence of record establishes that the Administrator erred in 
         granting a restoration of rent based on the tenants' failure to keep 
         the January 1991 inspection appointments despite the showing in the 
         record that the tenants phoned DHCR on January 25, 1991 to advise 
         that they would return to New York in March, 1991.  The tenants 
         contend that the inspector agreed to await their return to New York 
         in March 1991.  The evidence of record supports the tenants' 
         allegations.   The Commissioner notes that the June 12 and July 20, 
         1990 DHCR inspections, which occurred more than one month following 
         the owner's allegation that all services were restored, reported 
         faulty wiring and a possible fire hazardous condition, necessitating 
         continued rent reduction.   Therefore, the Commissioner finds that 
         the Restoration Order was unwarranted, and should be revoked.
          


         THEREFORE, in accordance with Rent Stabilization Law and Code, it is

         ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted, and 
         the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same hereby is, revoked, 
         and the proceeding be and the same hereby is remanded for further 












          DOC. NO.: FC 410478-RT
         processing.

         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