Administrative Review Docket Nos.: FL810304RT through FL810317RT
           
                                      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
          APPEALS OF                            DOCKET NO.: FL810304RT       
                                                   through FL810317RT
                 VARIOUS TENANTS,           :                               
                                             
                                                                      DRO DOCKET NO.: FE910034RP
                                            :                 (EJ930060B)

                                 PETITIONERS    LANDLORD: ALEXANDER STERN    
           
          ----------------------------------x


          ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITIONS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW 


          On December 19, 1991, the above-referenced tenants filed fourteen 
          individual but identical Petitions for Administrative Review 
          against an order issued on November 14, 1991, by the District Rent 
          Administrator at 55 Church Street, White Plains, New York, 
          concerning the housing accommodations known as various apartments 
          at 284 South Columbus Avenue, Mount Vernon, New York, wherein the 
          Administrator directed the restoration of services, further finding 
          that a rent reduction based thereon was not warranted under the 
          circumstances.

          The Commissioner has reviewed all of the evidence in the record 
          and has carefully considered that portion of the record relevant 
          to the issues raised by these PARs.

          On October 16, 1990, fifty-six tenants submitted a joint complaint 
          of a decrease in building-wide services and requested a rent 
          reduction based thereon.

          In the appealed order, the Administrator found that there had been 
          a reduction in services as to various building-wide services. The 
          Administrator directed the landlord to restore said services and 
          denied the tenants' application for a rent reduction based on a 
          reduction in services. The Administrator noted, in the appealed 
          order, that "a majority of the tenants are already under a rent 
          decrease due to a major fire at the building".

          In the PARs herein, the tenants state, in substance, that the rent 
          reductions in effect for the tenants whose apartments were damaged 












          Administrative Review Docket Nos.: FL810304RT through FL810317RT

          by the fire (under which those tenants pay $1.00 a month rent) was 
          given to tenants who have vacated the building whereas some twenty 
          of the original complainants below are still in the building and 
          are enduring, without monetary compensation, the decreases in 
          service found by the Administrator. Moreover, they argue, whether 
          or not a rent reduction is granted is not a matter within the 
          Administrator's discretion, but is mandatory once a reduction in 
          services is found.

          In answer to the PARs, the landlord, in pertinent part, states that 
          the Administrator correctly denied the tenants' application for a 
          rent reduction. 

          The Commissioner is of the opinion that the PARs should be denied 
          and the Administrator's order should be affirmed.

          The Commissioner notes that the relevant section of the Tenant 
          Protection Regulations (TPR), Section 2503.4, reads in pertinent 
          part as follows: "A tenant may apply to the division for a 
          reduction of the legal regulated rent to the level in effect prior 
          to the most recent adjustment under section 2502.5(c) of this 
          Chapter, and the division may so reduce the rent where it is found 
          that the owner has failed to maintain services"[emphasis supplied]. 
          The Commissioner finds that it is within the discretion of the 
          Administrator to grant or deny a rent reduction in a case where a 
          reduction in services is found. The Commissioner further finds that 
          the tenants have failed to assert in their PARs any basis upon 
          which the Administrator's denial of the rent reduction herein might 
          be deemed an abuse of that discretion.  


          THEREFORE, in accordance with the provisions of all of the 
          applicable statutes and regulations, it is,

          ORDERED, that these Petitions for Administrative Review be, and the 
          same hereby are, denied, and, that the order of the Rent Adminis- 
          trator be, and the same hereby is, affirmed.


          ISSUED:


                                                                             
                                              JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA             
                                              Deputy Commissioner



          1A2D3D2FL810304.RT    
    

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