HC110077RO; EJ110210RO
                                  

                                  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 NOS.: HC110077RO
                                                                 EJ110210RO
                  OCEAN LEASING COMPANY,            
                                                    RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S
                                                    DOCKET NO.:  FB110029RK
                                  PETITIONER                     EG110015S  
          -----------------------------------x


          ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITIONS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW


          The above-named owner filed timely petitions for administrative 
          review of orders issued by the Rent Administrator concerning the 
          housing accommodations known as 22-11 New Haven Avenue, Apartment 
          6F, Queens, New York, wherein the Rent Administrator originally and 
          upon reconsideration determined the tenant's complaint of a 
          reduction of services.

          The Commissioner has reviewed all the evidence in the record and 
          has carefully considered the portions of the record relevant to the 
          issues raised by the petitions.

          The tenant commenced this proceeding on July 2, 1990 by filing a 
          complaint asserting that the owner had failed to maintain certain 
          services in the subject apartment.  In pertinent part, the tenant 
          alleged that the paint was falling off the bathroom walls, that the 
          bathtub hot and cold water knobs were reversed, the paint was 
          peeling from the bathtub and that a new lock was required for the 
          front door.

          In an answer dated August 27, 1990, the owner, in regard to those 
          items that are the subject matter of this review, responded that 
          the bathroom was painted and that the bathtub faucet knobs had been 
          switched back to their proper location.

          Thereafter, an inspection of the subject apartment was conducted on 
          September 24, 1990 by a DHCR inspector, who reported in pertinent 
          part, that the bathroom walls and ceilings were plastered in an 
          unworkmanlike manner, noting parenthetically "not painted", and 
          that there was a leak from the bathtub hot water faucet and knob.













          HC110077RO; EJ110210RO



          Based on the results of the inspection on October 9, 1990, the Rent 
          Administrator issued the order per Docket No. EG110015S reducing 
          the tenant's rent effective August 1, 1990.

          The owner filed a petition for administrative review, and a request 
          for reconsideration stating, in substance, that neither of the 
          conditions for the rent reduction were included in the tenant's 
          complaint.

          On February 28, 1991, the Rent Administrator issued a "Notice of 
          Commencement of Proceeding to Reconsider the Previous Order."  The 
          notice indicated that the inspector checked the bathroom ceiling 
          and walls as requested and that it is in the record that the 
          bathroom walls and ceiling were plastered in an unworkmanlike 
          manner, and that the instruction to a typist to prepare the order, 
          abbreviated bathroom as "B" but was typed as "bedroom."  The notice 
          also set forth that the inspector did not find the water faucet 
          knob conditions cited in the complaint but found "other defects 
          which should have not been included in [the] order".

          An inspection was conducted on November 30, 1992 by a DHCR 
          inspector who reported that the bathroom ceiling was uneven, noting 
          parenthetically that it was unworkmanlike, but that it had been 
          painted, that there was no evidence of defective bathroom walls, 
          and that the bathtub faucet knobs had been installed in the proper 
          place, but that the hot water faucet was leaking and the cold water 
          faucet knob was loose. 

          Based on the inspection results, on February 16, 1993 the Rent 
          Administrator issued a new order per Docket No. FB110029RK 
          modifying the initial rent reduction order to reflect the 
          aforementioned inspector's  findings, and ordering an amended 
          effective date of the rent reduction, October 1, 1992, the first 
          day of the month following notification to the owner of the 
          tenant's response in the reconsideration proceeding.

          In the petition for administrative review of the modification 
          order, the owner argues that the latest order is erroneous for 
          several reasons.  The owner asserts that the tenant never requested 
          a rent reduction for either the bathroom ceiling or the faucet 
          leak, that the notice of reconsideration wherein it was expressly 
          stated that the issue of the faucet leak "should not have been 
          included in the order" constituted an order which the tenant did 
          not appeal, that the owner was never notified that the faucet leak 
          would become an issue, that the order contradicts the notice of 
          reconsideration, and that the leak condition does not constitute a 
          reduction in services.









          HC110077RO; EJ110210RO

          After careful consideration the Commissioner is of the opinion that 
          the petitions should be granted, as more fully set forth below.

          Pursuant to Section 2523.4 of the Rent Stabilization Code, DHCR is 
          required to order a rent reduction, upon application by a tenant, 
          where it is found that an owner has failed to maintain required 
          services.

          The Rent Administrator initially granted the tenant a rent reduc- 
          tion based on the fact that the bathtub hot water leaked after 
          repairs, and that the bathroom walls and ceiling were defective.

          The inspection, conducted on November 30, 1992 in connection with 
          the reconsideration proceedings per Docket No. FB110029RK also 
          revealed a hot water faucet leak and ceiling defects, but found no 
          evidence of defects on bathroom walls, and thus the condition was 
          not cited as a predicate for the rent reduction when the effective 
          date of the rent reduction was modified to October 1, 1992.  In  
          the absence of a timely petition for administrative review by the 
          tenant requesting review, the Commissioner is precluded from 
          considering whether the tenant is entitled to a rent reduction for 
          any period for the bathroom wall defects.

          The conditions reported by the inspector and cited in the Rent 
          Administrator's order of modification were not the conditions cited 
          in the complaint, and must therefore be revoked.  As a result, 
          there is no longer any basis for a rent reduction.

          The Commissioner further notes that the owner submitted a request 
          questioning whether there was an automatic stay of the rent arrears 
          owed the owner by the tenant as a result of the order modifying the 
          effective date of the rent reduction from July 1, 1990 to October 
          1, 1992.  In light of the instant order and opinion the owner's 
          request has been rendered moot.

          Rent arrears due the owner from the tenant shall be paid in monthly 
          installments equal in number to the months the arrears accumulated.


          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent Stabilization Law & Code,  
          it is























          HC110077RO; EJ110210RO

          ORDERED, that the petitions per Docket Nos. EJ110210RO and 
          HC110077RO be, granted, and that the rent reduction granted by the 
          Rent Administrator be revoked as there is no predicate for any rent 
          reduction to the tenant.


          ISSUED:






                                                                             
                                                       JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                       Deputy Commissioner

    

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