FF530030RO, SJR 7196




                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                      DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                                  92-31 UNION HALL
                                  JAMAICA, NY 11433





          ------------------------------------x        SJR #7196
          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE          ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
          APPEAL OF                                    DOCKET NO.:
                                                       FF530030RO
               Stellar Management Co., Inc.,
                                                       RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                       DOCKET NO.:
                                                       EL530002OR
                                   PETITIONER
          ------------------------------------x

            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW

          On June 6, 1991, the above-named petitioner-owner filed a petition 
          for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on May 29, 1991, 
          by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing accommodations 
          known as 120 Vermilyea Avenue, New York, N.Y., various apartments,  
          wherein the Administrator denied the owner's application for rent 
          restoration, based upon an inspection of the premises, on March 19, 
          1991, which disclosed  that the owner failed to maintain the 
          courtyard lawn.

          Subsequent thereto, the petitioner filed a petition in the Supreme 
          Court pursuant to Article 78 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules 
          deeming its petition denied.  Subsequent thereto, the parties 
          stipulated and the court directed that the Division was to issue an 
          order in this proceeding within thirty-five (35) days of November 
          19, 1993.

          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.

          The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly denied 
          the owner's application for rent restoration.

          On September 27, 1990, the owner filed an application to restore 
          rent, alleging that the courtyard lawn was being maintained in that 
          it had been seeded and bushes had been planted.












          FF530030RO, SJR 7196




          Two tenants filed answers to the application alleging that not all 
          maintenance has been completed, as alleged by the owner in its 
          present application for restoration.  The gravamen of these answers 
          are that although the owner may have properly seeded the lawn and 
          planted bushes -- other problems such as drainage and fencing 
          problems were not addressed.

          A DHCR inspection conducted on March 19, 1991, revealed that the 
          courtyard lawn is not being properly maintained in that "some areas 
          of the courtyard lawn were missing green, so it was not properly 
          maintained."

          On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted, in pertinent part, that 
          the courtyard is beautifully maintained and that bushes and plants 
          have been planted all over the courtyard.

          The petition was served on the tenants on June 28, 1991, and in 
          July, 1991, the tenants of apartments A-21, A-32, and A-41 filed 
          answers to the petition stating that the courtyard is not being 
          properly maintained, in that the drainage is poor, the cement is 
          cracked, and the fence is defective. 

          After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record, the 
          Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal 
          should be granted.

          The Commissioner notes that the owner was previously granted 
          partial rent restoration, amounting to $6.00 per month, for 
          restoration of the basement steps and courtyard walk, under Docket 
          No. DK530054OR and that it filed another application for the 
          balance ($3.00 per month) for maintenance of the courtyard lawn in 
          the instant proceeding. The original rent reduction order reduced 
          the rents by $9.00 per month.

          The subject application for rent restoration was filed by the owner 
          in which it certified that the courtyard lawn was being maintained 
          in all respects.

          The record reveals that the Rent Administrator denied the owner's 
          present application putting full reliance on the inspector's report 
          of March 19, 1991, which showed that "some areas of the courtyard 
          lawn were missing green..."

          The Commissioner finds, however, that this is a meager and 
          insufficient predicate for denial of the owner's restoration 
          application.

          It is also noted, parenthetically, that only two tenants filed 
          answers below concerning the lawn and one of them acknowledged that 






          FF530030RO, SJR 7196

          the courtyard lawn was seeded and that the bushes were planted. 
          Other complaints about the courtyard were presented by these 
          tenants, but they were not the subject of the rent reduction order.  
          (On appeal only three tenants answered and none addressed the 
          condition of the lawn.)

          Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that the owner restored 
          courtyard lawn maintenance services and is entitled to full 
          restoration of rent in the amount of $3.00 per month for all rents 
          that were reduced in Docket No. BE530019B effective the first rent 
          payment day following May 29, 1991, the issuance date of the 
          appealed order plus all lawful rent increases granted subsequent 
          thereto.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of the Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations for New York City, it is

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted and 
          that the Rent Administrator's order issued on May 29, 1991, under 
          Docket Number EL530002OR be, and the same hereby is, revoked. 
                    


          ISSUED:






                                                                     
                                             JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                             Deputy Commissioner  






    

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