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.:FB110062RO
Mid Forest Company, RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
109-33 71 Road
Forest Hills, NY
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative
review of an order issued on January 4, 1991 concerning the housing
accommodations relating to the above-described docket number.
The Commissioner has reviewed all the evidence in the record and has
carefully considered that portion of the record relevant to the
issues raised by the petition.
The tenant commenced this proceeding on October 20, 1989 by filing
a complaint asserting that he approached the building superintendent
concerning a cracked ceiling in his apartment at various times since
August 1989; that nothing was done to repair the apartment ceiling;
and that the ceiling was being held up by masking tape.
In answer, the owner asserted in substance that a plasterer is
scheduled to repair the ceiling on November 27 - 28, 1989.
On November 28, 1990, an inspection of the subject apartment was
conducted by a DHCR staff member who reported that the apartment
ceiling had peeling paint and plaster near the window, and seemed to
By an order dated January 4, 1991, the Administrator directed the
restoration of services and ordered a rent reduction.
In this petition, the owner contends in substance that repair work
was done on November 29, 1990 and January 11, 1991; that DHCR should
have mailed the results of inspection to the owner; that the new
findings are new conditions not contained in the original complaint;
and that the conditions are de minimis.
DHCR mailed a copy of the petition to the tenant.
After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion that
the petition should be denied.
Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code, DHCR is
authorized to order a rent reduction, upon application by a tenant,
where it is found that an owner has failed to maintain required
services. The owner's petition does not establish any basis to
modify or revoke the Administrator's determination based on the
November 28, 1990 inspection which confirmed that the apartment
ceiling had peeling paint and plaster near the window and seemed to
be collapsing. The Commissioner notes that these conditions are not
de minimis, but serious defects warranting a rent reduction.
The owner's contention that repair work was done on November 29,
1990 was not raised in the proceeding below before the
Administrator. To the contrary, the owner's answer to the complaint
specified repairs on November 27 - 28, 1989. Although the
Administrator's order was issued on January 4, 1991, the owner never
advised the Administrator that repairs had been completed prior to
the issuance of said order if in fact that was the case.
The owner's contention that DHCR should have mailed the results of
inspection to the owner is without merit. The tenant's complaint is
sufficient notice to the owner. The inspection report merely
confirmed the allegations in the complaint which the owner failed to
diligently investigate and make necessary, effective repairs.
(Empress Manor Apartments v. NYS DHCR, 538 NYS 2d 49, 147 AD 2d 642,
February 21, 1989).
As to the owner's allegation in the petition that the
Administrator's finding is a new condition, the owner's answer to
the complaint in the proceeding below stated that it was sending a
plasterer to repair the ceiling. The tenant's complaint, stating
that nothing was done to repair the apartment ceiling and that the
ceiling was being held up by masking tape, is sufficient notice for
the owner to investigate and make necessary repairs.
THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code
and Operational Bulletin 84-1, it is
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, denied, and
that the Administrator's order be, and the same hereby is, affirmed.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA