STATE OF NEW YORK
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                               JAMAICA, NEW YORK 11433

          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.:             

                    SOLGAR REALTY                 RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
               c/o  BARRY SKOLNICK,               DOCKET NO.:


          On April 27, 1992, the above-named petitioner-owner timely refiled 
          a petition for administrative review (PAR) of an order issued on 
          March 6, 1992, by the Rent Administrator, concerning the housing 
          accommodations known as 111 15th Street, Brooklyn, New York, 
          Various Apartments, wherein the Administrator determined that a 
          reduction in rent was warranted based upon a reduction in hot-water 
          services.  The Rent Administrator also directed full restoration of 

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

          The issue herein is whether the Rent Administrator properly reduced 
          the rent of the subject apartments.

          On November 25, 1991, the tenants filed a complaint alleging that 
          the owner was not maintaining heat and hot water services in the 
          subject building.

          The owner filed an answer to the complaint alleging that the 
          tenants' complaint was not true.

          A Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR) inspection 
          conducted on January 28, 1992, revealed that heating services were 
          being maintained but that the hot-water temperature was inadequate.  
          More specifically, the inspector found that hot-water temperatures 
          range from 110@ to 117@. 



          On appeal, the petitioner-owner asserted, in pertinent part, that 
          work on the hot water boiler was in progress at the time of the 
          inspection and that there was never a hot water problem in the 

          The petition was served on the tenants on May 11, 1992 and in May 
          and September 1992, the tenants filed answers to the petition 
          stating that the hot water temperature was still inadequate. 

          The owner sur-replied on August 19, 1992, stating that a new water 
          heating tank was installed and that hot water services were being 

          After a careful consideration of the entire evidence of record the 
          Commissioner is of the opinion that the administrative appeal 
          should be denied.

          Pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Rent Stabilization Code, a 
          tenant may apply to the Division of Housing and Community Renewal 
          (DHCR) for a reduction of the legal regulated rent to the level in 
          effect prior to the most recent guidelines adjustment, and the DHCR 
          shall so reduce the rent for the period for which it is found that 
          the owner has failed to maintain required services.

          Required services are defined in Section 2520.6(r) to include heat 
          and hot water.

          For rent controlled tenants, Section 2202.16 of the Rent and Evic- 
          tion Regulations provides that a finding that an owner failed to 
          maintain essential services may result in an order of decrease in 
          maximum rent, in an amount determined by the discretion of the Rent 
          Administrator, to reflect the decreased rental value because of the 
          decrease in services.

          Housing Maintenance Code regulations relating to supply of hot 
          water provide as follows:

               Section 27-2031 Supply of hot water when required:
               Except as otherwise provided in this article, every bath, 
               shower, washbasin and sink in any dwelling unit in a 
               multiple dwelling . . . . . . . . . . shall be supplied 
               at all times (between the hours of six a.m. and midnight) 
               with hot water at a constant minimum temperature of 120@ 
               Fahrenheit from a central source constructed in 
               accordance with provisions of the building code and the 
               regulations of the department.


          A review of the file clearly shows that the owner failed to provide 
          hot water services for apartments 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 10, 13 and 15.

          The inspection report finding inadequate hot water services 
          confirms the tenants' complaint that the owner failed to meet the 
          standard set forth in Section 27-2031 of the Housing Maintenance 

          The owner did not submit any evidence that the deficiencies noted 
          on the inspector's report were completed in a workmanlike manner at 
          the time of the DHCR's inspection or at any time prior to the 
          issuance of the Administrator's order.

          The Commissioner finds that the Administrator properly based his 
          determination on the entire record, including the results of the 
          on-site physical inspection conducted on January 28, 1992, and that 
          pursuant to Section 2523.4(a) of the Code, and Section 2202.16 of 
          the Rent and Eviction Regulations, the Administrator was mandated 
          to reduce the rent upon determining that the owner had failed to 
          maintain services.

          Accordingly, the Commissioner finds that the owner has offered 
          insufficient reason to disturb the Rent Administrator's determina- 

          The Division's records reveal that the owner's rent restoration 
          application was granted on October 26, 1993 (Docket No. 

          As regards the rent stabilized tenants, 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 provisions of the Rent Stabili- 
          zation Law and Code, and the Rent and Eviction Regulations for 
          New York City, it is

          ORDERED, that the owner's petition be, and the same hereby is, 
          denied, and the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same hereby 
          is, affirmed.


                                                JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                Deputy Commissioner          


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