FH 610197 RO
                                  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.: FH 610197-RO 
                                                
            RITA COPPOLECCHIA,                   DRO DOCKET NO.: FB 610610-S
            
                                PETITIONER     
          ----------------------------------X                           
            
            ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW,
                   AND AFFIRMING ADMINISTRATOR'S ORDER AS MODIFIED


          On August 19,  1991,  the  above-named  petitioner-owner  filed  a
          Petition for Administrative Review (PAR) against an  order  issued
          on July 18,  1991  by  the  Rent  Administrator  at  Gertz  Plaza,
          Jamaica, New York, concerning the housing accommodations known  as
          265 East 201 Street, Basement Apartment, Bronx, New York,  wherein
          the  Administrator  determined  the  tenant's   complaint   of   a
          diminution of individual apartment services.

          The owner responded that the tenant was engaged in a  campaign  of
          harassment against the owner,  that  the  tenants  filed  multiple
          unfounded complaints, that the tenant would not cooperate with the 
          owner and  would  not  grant  access  to  correct  the  conditions
          claimed.

          The Administrator's order granted  the  tenant  a  rent  reduction
          based on the results of an inspection conducted on June  20,  1991
          by a member of the Division's  inspection  staff.   The  inspector
          reported, in pertinent part, the following:

               1.  Water damaged living room walls.
               2.  Holes in living room, kitchen and bathroom walls,    
                    and around pipe near the door.
               3.  Water stained bedroom ceiling.
               4.  Uninsulated pipes throughout the apartment.
               5.  Odor of garbage.


          By appeal, the owner requests that the order be reversed in its 
          entirety as: (1) the order contradicted prior orders, (2) that the 
          tenant refused the owner access to the apartment for inspection 
          and repair of the conditions as indicated in the proceedings 
          below, and (3) that the tenant did not avail herself of the 
          extermination services provided by the owner.






          FH 610197 RO

          The owner also argues that the owner was denied due process in 
          that (1) the order fails to state facts upon which it is based, 
          (2) the Division failed to give the owner prior notice and the 
          opportunity to cure violations prior to the issuance of the order, 
          and (3) that the conditions alleged were not supported by a 
          subsequent inspection by the Department of Housing Preservation 
          and Development of the City of New York.

          In support of the assertions  below  that  the  tenant  would  not
          cooperate are  the  owner's  efforts  to  correct  the  conditions
          reported, the petitioner, on appeal,  submits  copies  of  notices
          forwarded to the tenant, by ordinary mail and by  certified  mail,
          return receipt requested, refused by the  tenant,  requesting  the
          tenant to provide access to the owner's repairmen.  Also submitted 
          were the superintendent's affidavit attesting that the tenant  had
          refused access to make  repairs,  paid  invoices  reflecting  pest
          exterminator services provided by the owner to tenants,  including
          the  basement  apartment,  and  a  statement  from   the   owner's
          plastering contractor that he was unable to obtain access  to  the
          tenant's apartment. 

          The applicable law is Section 2520.6(r) and  2523.4  of  the  Rent
          Stabilization Code.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is  of  the  opinion
          that the petition should be denied, but that  the  Administrator's
          order should be modified as provided below.

          The petitioner  is  correct  that  the  order  reducing  the  rent
          contradicted prior determinations, based on  inspections,  to  the
          effect  that  ceiling  heating  pipes  in  the  subject   basement
          apartment operate properly without insulation (CH  610314-S),  and
          that garbage cans which give rise to  the  odor  reported  by  the
          inspector in the proceedings herein under appeal  were  placed  in
          the most appropriate location for garbage cans to be kept for  the
          subject building, and did not constitute a  basis  for  harassment
          (20,179-HL).  In addition, no violations were issued by  the  City
          Department  of  Housing  Preservation  and  Development  for   the
          complaint of exposed pipes or for the complaint of odor  from  the
          garbage cans.  While the HPD violation report also failed to  note
          a hole in the livingroom, kitchen or  bathroom,  water  leaks  and
          damaged walls,  there  was  some  indication  that  the  apartment
          required some repairs.

          In light of the record, the Commissioner is of  the  opinion  that
          the Administrator's rent reduction order should  be  modified,  in
          part, on the grounds that it has not been shown that heating pipes 
          are required to be insulated and that the placement of the garbage 
          cans was a violation.

          The owner confirmed, on appeal,  the  assertions  below  that  the
          tenant refused access, by statements from workmen and contractors, 







          FH 610197 RO

          certified letters to the tenant requesting  access,  and  evidence
          of other official proceedings  which  to  some  degree  failed  to
          support  the  tenant's  numerous  claims.   However,  the  owner's
          failure to properly raise and establish the lack of access in  the
          proceedings below, pursuant to Policy Statement (90-5):  Arranging
          Repairs - No Access Inspections, precludes  consideration  of  the
          issue and submissions on appeal.  Consequently, a  rent  reduction
          was properly granted on the record presented.

          This order is issued without prejudice to  the  owner's  right  to
          file an application for restoration of  rent,  predicated  upon  a
          restoration of services.  The owner may  also  apply  for  a  rent
          restoration if the tenant continues to  refuse  access  to  effect
          repairs.

          The petitioner's  claim  of  lack  of  due  process  is  rejected.
          Division procedures do not require the Division  to  give  parties
          notice of the results of an inspection prior  to  issuance  of  an
          Administrator's order.  The  owner  was  afforded  due  notice  by
          service of the tenant's complaint.  Additionally,  the  inspection
          report is available to the parties by filing a FOIL request.

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

          ORDERED, that the owner's petition be denied.  The Administrator's 
          order is modified, to the extent of revoking uninsulated pipes and 
          the garbage odors as a basis for the rent reduction.  In all other 
          respects, the Administrator's order is affirmed.  

          ISSUED:




                                                                        
                                          JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                          Deputy Commissioner


    

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