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.: GA110113R0       
                                                      
          Tenth Frogmouth Corp. c/o
          Horing and Welikson,                  DISTRICT RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S     
                                                DOCKET NO.: FH110545S         

                          PETITIONER            PREMISES:  Apt. 5N
                                                           90-10 149th St.
                                                           Jamaica, New York
          -----------------------------------X                           



             ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW


          The above-named owner filed a timely petition for administrative 
          review of an order issued on December 12, 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 this administrative appeal.

          This proceeding was commenced on August 23, 1991 by a tenant filing 
          a complaint asserting that the owner had failed to maintain services 
          in the subject apartment.

          On August 29, 1991, DHCR transmitted a copy of the tenant's 
          complaint to the owner with notice to the effect that it had 21 days 
          to interpose an answer.

          Although duly notified to do so, the owner failed to answer the 
          tenant's complaint.

















          GA110113RO

          Thereafter, on November 26, 1991, a physical inspection of the 
          subject apartment was conducted by a DHCR inspector who confirmed 
          the existence of roach infestation.

          On December 5, 1991, i.e. more than three months after service of 
          the tenant's complaint, the owner hand-delivered a letter to DHCR, 
          requesting an extension until December 27, 1991, with a statement 
          that "If we do not hear from you prior to this date, we will assume 
          that our request has been granted and we will file our response on 
          or before that date." There is nothing in the owner's letter 
          explaining its failure to timely file an answer to the tenant's 
          complaint, or the basis for requesting a further extension of time.

          By order dated December 12, 1991, the Administrator directed the 
          restoration of services, and further ordered a reduction of the 
          stabilized rent.

          In the petition for administrative review, the owner contends that 
          DHCR violated its due process rights by the Division's failure to 
          respond in writing to the owner's request for an extension of time 
          to the answer until December 27, 1991; that it is inappropriate to 
          find an owner in default when the owner has a defense; that the 
          owner should have been informed of the inspection results prior to 
          the issuance of the order; and that extermination is being provided 
          to the building on a monthly basis.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of the opinion that 
          the petition should be denied.

          The Commissioner finds that the Administrator's determination was 
          properly based on a timely on-site inspection which found roach 
          infestation in the apartment. The contention that exterminating 
          services are provided on a monthly fails to rebut the existence of 
          inadequate vermin control at the time of the inspection. 
          Accordingly, the order appealed from was in all respects proper and 
          is hereby sustained.

          With respect to the petitioner's contention regarding a deprivation 
          of due process in that it was not notified of the denial of its 
          request for an extension of time prior to the issuance of the 
          Administrator's order, said assertion is rejected. The record 
          clearly shows that on August 29, 1991, DHCR transmitted a copy of 
          the tenant's complaint to the owner with notice to the effect that 
          it had 21 days to interpose an answer; and that though duly notified 
          to do so, the owner failed to answer the tenant's complaint. The 
          Commissioner thus finds that the November 26, 1991 physical 
          inspection of the subject apartment confirming the existence of 
          roach infestation was proper and timely.
           

          GA110113RO





          CH110220RO
          The record further shows that on December 5, 1991, i.e. more than 
          three months after service of the tenant's complaint, the owner 
          hand-delivered a letter to DHCR, requesting an extension until 
          December 27, 1991, with a statement that "If we do not hear from you 
          prior to this date, we will assume that our request has been granted 
          and we will file our response on or before that date." There is 
          nothing in the owner's letter explaining its failure to timely file 
          an answer to the tenant's complaint, or the basis for requesting a 
          further extension of time. The Commissioner finds this request for 
          extension not timely. For the petitioner to complain of a violation 
          of its due process rights on the basis that it did not receive a 
          written denial of its request for an extension of time to answer , 
          which request was made more than three months after the service of 
          the tenant's complaint, is without foundation in law or fact. The 
          Division is not required to respond in writing to an extension 
          request and in the absence of a written response, a party may not 
          assume that such a request is granted. The owner may not assume that 
          if it does not receive a written denial, said request is granted. In 
          this regard, it is noted that neither the request below nor the 
          instant petition contain an explanation for having been in default 
          for some eleven weeks or the basis for requesting three additional 
          weeks.

          The defense that the owner is entitled to an inspection report in 
          the proceeding below is without merit. The Commissioner notes that 
          the tenant's complaint is sufficient notice to the owner; that the 
          owner chose not to diligently contest the tenant's allegations by 
          filing an answer three months after the service of the complaint; 
          that the inspection report merely confirmed an allegations in the 
          complaint; and that accordingly, the owner was not denied due 
          process. FH410081RO; Empress Manor Apartments v. DHCR, 538 N.Y.S.2d 
          49, 147 A.D.2d 642.

          The automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement that resulted  
          by the filing of this petition is vacated upon issuance of this 
          Order and Opinion.

          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law and Code, 
          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.


          ISSUED:


                                                                        
                                          JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                          Deputy Commissioner

                                           



















                                           



    

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