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.: HG120092RT
FRANCES MULHAUSER RENT
ORDER AND OPINION DENYING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW
The above named petitioner-tenant timely refiled a Petition
for Administrative Review against an order of the Rent
Administrator issued March 23, 1993. The order concerned housing
accommodations known as Apt. 4C located at 155-01 90th Ave.,
Jamaica, N.Y. The Administrator issued an order pursuant to a
remand from the Commissioner wherein it was found that all windows
have screens installed, that the windows operate properly and that
the windows do not allow any air seepage.
The Commissioner has reviewed the record and carefully
considered that portion relevant to the issues raised by this
The tenant originally commenced this proceeding on January 30,
1986 by filing a Statement of Complaint of Decrease in Services
wherein she alleged that the new windows installed by the owner in
July, 1984 are inferior to the old windows, are not installed
properly and that she no longer has storm windows and screens for
which she was charged a rent increase in 1977. The complaint was
assigned Docket No. AA120717S. On June 11, 1986 the Administrator
issued a rent reduction order granting the tenant a rent reduction
of $40.50 per month based on a finding that the there were nine
missing storm windows, nine missing screens and air seepage.
The owner filed an administrative appeal of the
Administrator's order. The appeal was assigned Docket No.
ARL11919Q. On July 2, 1992 the Commissioner issued an order and
opinion wherein the owner's appeal was granted in part and the
proceeding was remanded to the Administrator for further
processing. The Commissioner specifically ruled that the
installation of thermal windows freed the owner from the
requirement of maintaining storm windows. The Commissioner also
ruled that, since there had been no inspection confirming the
existence of air seepage, the proceeding had to be remanded so that
the Administrator could order an inspection to be conducted.
On February 1, 1993 the Administrator ordered this proceeding
reopened, pursuant to the Commissioner's order of remand. The
proceeding was assigned Docket No. GG120002RP. The parties were
given an opportunity to comment. The tenant filed a reply on
February 3,1993 and again complained, in relevant part, that the
new windows were not properly installed and permit dirt, air and
water seepage. The owner filed a reply on February 18, 1993 and
stated that the windows were functioning properly.
The Administrator ordered a physical inspection of the subject
apartment. The inspection was conducted on March 9, 1993 and
revealed the following:
1. The apartment windows are installed properly and do
not allow for any dirt, air or water seepage,
2. All windows open and close properly,
3. All windows are provided with screens.
The Administrator issued the order here under review on March
23, 1993. The report of the inspector was set forth as well as the
Commissioner's ruling in the above described administrative appeal
bearing Docket No. ARL11919Q. The Administrator found that the
original rent reduction order should be modified to reflect the
fact that the windows have screens installed, that the windows do
not allow seepage and that the windows operate properly with
respect to the tenant's complaint concerning the difficulty of
opening and closing same. The Administrator also noted that the
owner had filed for and been granted rent restoration (Docket No.
On appeal the tenant asserts that the thermal windows are not
the same as storm windows and screens and that the tenants should
not have to continue paying a $40.50 per month rent increase
previously ordered for storm windows and screens. The tenant's
appeal does not challenge the Administrator's findings with regard
to the operation of the windows or the issue of seepage. The
petition was served on the owner on August 4, 1993.
After careful review of the evidence in the record, the
Commissioner is of the opinion that the petition should be denied.
Thermal replacement windows are the energy efficient modern
equivalents of storm windows. The installation of such windows with
screens renders the use of storm windows unnecessary and obsolete.
The Commissioner finds that the Administrator's order issued
pursuant to remand was based on the entire record including the
results of the above described physical inspection. The tenant has
not rebutted that report. The order is, therefore, affirmed.
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