STATE OF NEW YORK
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
92-31 UNION HALL STREET
JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433
IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
APPEAL OF DOCKET NO.:
VAN KLEECK ASSOCIATES, DOCKET NO.:
51-25 Van Kleeck Street
PETITIONER Apt. 7-F, Elmhurst, NY
ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
IN PART AND MODIFYING ADMINISTRATOR'S ORDER
The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative
review of an order issued on August 7, 1991, concerning the housing
accommodations relating to the above-described docket number.
The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record and
has carefully considered that portion relevant to the issues raised
by the petition.
The tenant commenced this proceeding on March 19, 1991 by filing a
complaint asserting that the owner had failed to maintain certain
services in the subject apartment. Included in the complaint was
an allegation that there is profuse infestation of roaches in the
kitchen and bathroom.
In its answer filed on April 22, 1991, the owner denied the
allegations set forth in the tenant's complaint, and otherwise
asserted that all required services are being provided and that the
tenant only has to contact the owner if repairs have to be done.
The owner stated that the building is serviced twice a month by a
professional exterminating service. A copy of a list of tenants
who signed up for services on March 26, 1991 was enclosed and the
complainant's name is not listed. A copy of a work order with the
tenant's signature dated April 12, 1991 was also submitted, on
which was listed "Roach's spray 4/9" among the work completed.
A letter was received by the Division on July 24, 1991, in which
the tenant withdrew the complaint because services had been
However, the subject apartment was inspected on July 23, 1991 by a
DHCR staff member who confirmed the existence of roach infestation
in the kitchen.
Based on said inspection, the Administrator directed the restora-
tion of services and a reduction of the stabilized rent.
In this petition, the owner contends in substance that it was not
informed of the defective conditions by the tenant; that these
conditions "were immediately attended to" when DHCR informed the
owner; that the tenant withdrew the complaint before the inspection
and the order's issuance; and that the conditions are minor, not
warranting a rent reduction.
After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion
that this petition should be granted in part and the
Based on the two statements purportedly signed by the tenant that
all repairs had been completed, and that the complaint was being
withdrawn, the owner could reasonably assume that no further action
was required and that the proceeding before the Division would be
terminated without a rent reduction. Due process requires that the
tenant's statement, if submitted by the owner, be served on the
tenant and, if challenged, that the owner be advised that the
complaint was not being withdrawn.
In the instant case, the physical inspection revealed that,
contrary to the owner's allegation and the statement allegedly
signed by the tenant, the necessary repairs were not done. The
"roach spray" administered in April 1991 could not have been
effective if roach infestation was noted by the inspector three
A rent reduction for these conditions is required pursuant to
Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code, but because of the
failure to verify the tenant's signature on the signed work order
and withdrawal statement, or to advise the owner that the complaint
was not being terminated, the effective date of the rent reduction
is hereby modified to September 1, 1991, the first of the month
following issuance of the Administrator's order, when the owner had
actual knowledge that the complaint was still active and that the
agency's physical inspection revealed the need for additional or
more effective exterminating services.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code,
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, granted in
part, and that the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby
is, modified in accordance with this Order and Opinion.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
Acting Deputy Commissioner