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

          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO. HE420110RT 

                                                  DISTRICT RENT
                    TOM ETTINGER,                 ADMINISTRATOR'S DOCKET
                                                  NO. EE420090F


               On May 14, 1993, the above-named tenant filed a petition for 
          administrative review of an order issued on April 9, 1993 by a Rent 
          Administrator concerning the housing accommodation known as 
          Apartment 11G, 420 Riverside Drive, New York, New York.

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

               On March 26, 1990, the subject landlord filed with the rent 
          agency a Fuel Cost Adjustment Report, under Docket No. EC422456FC, 
          in order to qualify for an increase in the fuel cost adjustment 
          effective January 1, 1990.

               On May 22,1990, the subject tenant filed with the rent agency 
          a challenge to the aforementioned Fuel Cost Adjustment Report for 

               On April 9, 1993, the Administrator issued the order under 
          review herein which denied the tenant's challenge.  The 
          Administrator's order stated that:  "Tenant challenges the lack of 
          essential services.  In connection with the tenant's challenge of 
          landlord's Fuel Cost Adjustment Report for the year 1990, an 
          examination of our records reveal no rent reduction for heat and/or 
          hot water.  The tenant's challenge is denied."

          ADM. REVIEW DOCKET NO. HE420110RT

               In his petition, the subject tenant asserts, among other 
          things, that the subject landlord is not entitled to an increase in 
          fuel cost adjustments; that the subject building has numerous rent 
          impairing violations; that the Administrator issued an order 
          suspending fuel cost adjustments for 1989, under Docket No. 
          DD424216FR; that the order issued under Docket No. DD424216FR 
          directed the landlord to refund or credit to the tenants any fuel 
          adjustments paid between January 1, 1989 and December 31, 1989; 
          that the subject landlord did not refund or credit to the tenants 
          fuel adjustments paid during 1989; that granting the increase in 
          fuel cost adjustments would be a hardship to the elderly tenants; 
          that the "landlords are not entitled to any cumulative fuel 
          increase because of substantial decreases of required essential 
          services," and that it was improper for the Administrator to have 
          increased the fuel cost adjustments retroactively.

               To his petition, the subject tenant attaches, among other 
          things, a copy of a list of numerous building violations reported 
          by the tenants against the subject building.

               After careful consideration, the Commissioner finds that the 
          tenant's petition should be denied.

               Pursuant to Sections 2202.13(b)(3) and 2202.13(h) of the City 
          Rent and Eviction Regulations and Policy Statement 91-3, the 
          Commissioner notes that a landlord is barred from collecting 
          increases for fuel cost adjustments when there is a rent reduction 
          order in effect for failing to maintain an essential service.  If 
          the service in question is heat and/or hot water, the landlord can 
          not collect an increase for fuel cost adjustments until twelve 
          months after the effective date of an order restoring the rent.

               The record reflects that on January 1, 1990, the effective 
          date of the increase in fuel cost adjustments in this proceeding, 
          there was no rent reduction order in effect for failing to maintain 
          an essential service in the subject building or apartment.  Nor had 
          a rent reduction for failure to maintain adequate heat or hot water 
          been restored within twelve months of January 1, 1990. 

               The Commissioner finds that the subject tenant has not 
          substantiated his allegations that the landlord is not eligible for 
          a fuel cost adjustment for 1990.

               As to the tenant's assertion that the landlord is not eligible 
          for an increase in the fuel cost adjustment as the subject building 
          contains numerous rent impairing violations, the Commissioner finds 
          that that assertion is without merit.  The removal of rent 
          impairing violations, which are on record with the New York City 

          Department of Housing Preservation and Development-Division of Code 
          Enforcement, is one of the pre-requisites of the rent agency in 

          ADM. REVIEW DOCKET NO. HE420110RT

          granting the landlord maximum base rent increases, pursuant to 
          Section 2202.3(h) of the City Rent and Eviction Regulations; 
          however, the aforementioned violation removal requirements are not 
          a pre-requisite of the rent agency in granting the landlord an 
          increase in the fuel cost adjustment.

               As to the subject tenant's assertion that it was improper for 
          the Administrator to have increased the fuel cost adjustments 
          retroactively, the Commissioner points out that that assertion is 
          without merit.  The record reflects that the subject landlord has 
          met the filing requirements of Section 2202.13 of the City Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations to qualify for a fuel cost adjustment for 
          1990.  Section 2202.13(e) of the above-mentioned regulations state 

                    If the report is served and filed within 60  
                    days of the date of promulgation of the 
                    findings of fuel price increase and
                    standards of consumption by the Division of
                    Housing and Community Renewal, the rent 
                    adjustment shall be retroactive to and shall
                    become effective as of January first of the
                    calendar year in which the report is filed.

               As to the tenant's assertion that the increase in the fuel 
          cost adjustment would be a hardship to elderly tenants, the 
          Commissioner finds that that assertion does not raise any issues 
          which would warrant the revocation of the Administrator's order 
          under review herein.  The Commissioner notes that tenants who have 
          obtained a Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption prior to January 
          1, 1990, pursuant to Section 2202.20(a) of the City Rent and 
          Eviction Regulations, are exempt from having to pay rent increases 
          due to fuel cost adjustments for 1990.

               As to the tenant's assertion that the landlord has not 
          refunded or credited to the tenants any fuel adjustments paid 
          during 1989, pursuant to Docket No. DD424216FR, the Commissioner 
          finds that the tenants remedy is to file an update request with the 
          rent agency for a determination of the tenant's rent, or the tenant 
          may seek relief in a court of competent jurisdiction.

               THEREFORE, in accordance with the City Rent and Rehabilitation 
          Law and the Rent and Eviction Regulations, it is 

               ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby is, 

          ADM. REVIEW DOCKET NO. HE420110RT

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


                                             JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                             Deputy Commissioner 


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