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.: GG410024RO
FANNIE KLEIN RENT
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
On July 3, 1992 the above named petitioner-owner filed a
Petition for Administrative Review against an order of the Rent
Administrator issued June 1, 1992. The order concerned housing
accommodations known as Apt 4D located at 344 E. 85th Street, New
York, N.Y. The Administrator directed restoration of services and
ordered a rent reduction for failure to maintain required services.
The Commissioner has reviewed the record and carefully
considered that portion relevant to the issues raised by this
The tenant commenced this proceeding on April 12, 1990 by
filing a Statement of Complaint of Decrease in Services and stated
that the laundry room was no longer open 24 hours a day but is now
locked between 10 PM and 8 AM.
The owner was served with a copy of the complaint and afforded
an opportunity to respond. The owner filed a response on April 24,
1990 and admitted that the laundry room was no longer open 24 hours
a day due to acts of vandalism. The tenant filed a reply on August
5, 1991 and stated that there were other methods the owner could
have employed to deal with the vandalism, that she has to leave for
work at 7:30 AM and usually does the laundry at 5:00 AM, that the
superintendent often does not open the laundry room until well
after 8:00 AM, and that if the laundry room has to be locked the
tenants should be given keys.
The Administrator determined, based on the record, that the
owner admitted reducing the laundry room hours. Determining that
relief was warranted, the Administrator issued the order here under
review on June 1, 1992 and granted a rent reduction to the
complaining tenant in an amount equal to the most recent guideline
On appeal the owner states that there was no reduction in
services but merely an attempt to safeguard the service from acts
of vandalism to the washing machines. The petition was served on
the tenant on July 14, 1992.
The tenant filed a response on August 28, 1992 and stated, in
sum, that the owner had not restored services.
After careful review of the evidence in the record, the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be denied.
Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code requires DHCR to
order a rent reduction where it is found that the owner has failed
to maintain required services. Section 2520.6 (r) defines required
services as that space and those services which the owner was
maintaining or required to maintain on the applicable base date.
The substantial reduction in the number of hours that laundry
facilities are available for tenant use is a serious inconvenience
and constitutes a reduction in services for which a rent reduction
The Commissioner has consistently ruled that acts of vandalism
do not excuse the owner from maintaining required services. The
Administrator correctly issued the order here under review based on
the information in the record. The order is affirmed. The
automatic stay of the retroactive rent abatement which resulted
from the Administrator's order is vacated upon issuance of this
order and opinion.
The Commissioner notes that the owner's application for rent
restoration (Docket No. GG410017OR) is pending before the DHCR.
THEREFORE, pursuant to the Rent Stabilization Law and Code it
ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is,
denied, and that the Rent Administrator's order be, and the same
hereby is, affirmed.
JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA