FE410212RO

                                  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.: FE410212RO
                                                  
          301 REALTY CO.                          RENT
                                                  ADMINISTRATOR'S DOCKET 
                                                  NO.: CK410100S
                                  PETITIONER            
          ----------------------------------x


            ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
                                          
               On May 17, 1991 the above named petitioner-owner filed a 
          Petition for Administrative Review against an order of the Rent 
          Administrator issued April 16, 1991. The order concerned housing 
          accommodations known as Apt 3J located at 301 East 38th Street, New 
          York, N.Y.  The Administrator directed restoration of services and 
          ordered a rent reduction for failure to maintain required services.  

               The Commissioner has reviewed the record and carefully 
          considered that portion relevant to the issues raised by this 
          appeal.

               The tenant commenced this proceeding on November 4, 1988 by 
          filing a Statement of Complaint of Decrease in Services and alleged 
          that the owner was not maintaining certain required services. The 
          tenant specifically stated, in relevant part, that the owner had 
          reduced closet space due to the installation of new plumbing, that 
          there was rodent infestation and that the bathroom tiles were 
          replaced with ones that do not match in color.

               The owner was served with a copy of the complaint and afforded 
          an opportunity to respond. The owner filed a response on December 
          29, 1988 and stated that the building was undergoing massive 
          renovations to improve the level of services.
           
               The Administrator ordered a physical inspection of the subject 
          apartment.  The inspection was conducted on November 15, 1989.  The 
          apartment was reinspected on January 16, 1990.  The inspector 
          reported that there was evidence of infestation in the kitchen and 
          that the bathroom tiles had been replaced with ones of a different 
          color than the remaining ones.  The inspector also reported that an 
          area of the closet space had been reduced due to the installation 
          of piping.












          FE410212RO

               On February 6, 1991 the Administrator sent the owner a notice 
          of the fact that various building tenants had filed complaints 
          about the decrease in closet space.  The owner was afforded an 
          opportunity to file an Application for Modification of Services 
          before this proceeding was decided.  The owner did not respond to 
          this notice.

               The Administrator issued the order here under review on April 
          16, 1991 and ordered a rent reduction of an amount equal to one 
          guideline adjustment based on the inspector's report.

               On appeal the owner, as represented by counsel, states, in 
          substance, that it was denied due process because the February 6, 
          1991 notice giving the owner an opportunity to file an application 
          for modification of services did not reference the subject 
          proceeding or tenant and did not advise the owner that a rent 
          reduction would be ordered if the owner did not respond.  The owner 
          also asserts that it did respond and requested additional 
          information from the Administrator but the request was not 
          answered.  The owner argues that it should be afforded the 
          opportunity to file the application for modification before a rent 
          reduction is ordered.  The petition was served on the tenant on May 
          29, 1991.
           
               The tenant filed a response on June 7, 1991 and stated that 
          the owner was not denied due process and that the order here under 
          review was correctly issued and should be affirmed.

               After careful review of the evidence in the record, the 
          Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be denied.

               Contrary to the owner's assertion, the Administrator's letter 
          of February 6, 1991 was sufficient to put the owner on notice of 
          the purpose of the communication without referring to specific 
          tenants or docket numbers.  The letter referred to complaints by 
          tenants of the subject building alleging a reduction in closet 
          space. This was sufficiently specific to inform the owner of the 
          proceedings involved.

               Moreover, it was not necessary for the Administrator to afford 
          the owner an opportunity to file an application to modify services 
          before ordering a rent reduction.  Section 2522.4 of the Rent 
          Stabilization Code which permits such applications specifically 
          provides that no decrease in services is to take place prior to the 
          approval by the DHCR of the owner's application.  However, since 
          two inspections had already confirmed the reduction in space, a 
          rent reduction pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Code was required.

               The Commissioner notes that the owner's arguments have been 
          considered by the Commissioner in proceedings involving three other 
          apartments in the subject building.  In Docket Nos. FE410189RO, 
          FE420190RO and FE420210RO the Commissioner rejected the owner's 






          FE410212RO

          contention that it had been denied due process.  The order here 
          under review is affirmed.

               It is also noted that the owner has filed a petition pursuant 
          to Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules wherein it seeks 
          to annul the Commissioner's determinations in Docket Nos. 
          FE410189RO, FE420190RO and FE420210RO.  The Article 78 proceeding 
          is currently pending before the Supreme Court.  The owner has also 
          filed an application to modify services which is pending before the 
          DHCR.

               The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement that 
          resulted by the filing of this petition is vacated upon issuance of 
          this order and opinion.

               THEREFORE, pursuant to the Rent Stabilization Law and Code it 
          is 

               ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, 
          denied, and that the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same 
          hereby is, affirmed.

          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