EK 220172-RO

                                  STATE OF NEW YORK
                      DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL
                            OFFICE OF RENT ADMINISTRATION
                                     GERTZ PLAZA
                               92-31 UNION HALL STREET
                                  JAMAICA, NY 11433



          ----------------------------------x
          IN THE MATTER OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE     ADMINISTRATIVE  REVIEW
          APPEAL OF                               DOCKET NO.:   
                                                  EK 220172-RO
                                                  RENT      ADMINISTRATOR'S
                    JAMES PARRIS,            DOCKET NO.: 
                                                  DH 220614-S
                                                  PREMISES: 
                                                  47 MacDonough St.,      
                                   PETITIONER     Apt. 16, Brooklyn, NY    
          ----------------------------------x 
                          

                                                            
            ORDER AND OPINION GRANTING PETITION FOR ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW  
                  IN PART AND MODIFYING RENT ADMINISTRATOR'S ORDER

          On November 19, 1990, the above-named petitioner filed  a  timely
          Petition for Administrative Review of an order issued on  October
          16, 1990, concerning the housing accommodations relating  to  the
          above-described docket numbers.

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

          The tenant commenced this proceeding on August 18, 1989 by filing 
          a complaint asserting that  the  owner  had  failed  to  maintain
          sixteen, itemized services in the subject apartment.

          In his answer filed on September 28, 1989, the owner  denied  the
          allegations as set forth in the tenant's complaint and  otherwise
          asserted that he is "doing his best to keep the building in  good
          operative condition".  The owner also  stated  that  repairs  are
          still being performed and many repairs had been completed.

          An on-site inspection of the subject apartment was  conducted  on
          September 18, 1990 by a Division of Housing and Community Renewal 
          (DHCR) staff member who confirmed the existence of  numerous  de-
          fective conditions.




          Based on this inspection, the Administrator directed  restoration
          of services and a reduction of the legal regulated  rent  in  the
          following manner:


          1.  Bedroom door missing glass pane and door knob . . $  3.00






          EK 220172-RO
          2.  Apartment entrance door - broken frame  . . . . .    5.00
          3.  Near apartment entrance door, the ceiling is 
              water stained . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .    5.00
          4.  Bedroom - peeling paint and plaster on walls
              ($5.00) and ceiling ($5.00) . . . . . . . . . . .   10.00
          5.  Kitchen cabinet door does not close properly  . .    3.00
          6.  Bathroom ceiling next to riser - fallen plaster .    5.00
          7.  Apartment intercom - defective  . . . . . . . . .    6.00

                                                      Total:    $ 37.00
                                                                  =====

          In this petition, the owner contends in substance  that  as  evi-
          denced by copies of allegedly  paid  bills  dated  prior  to  the
          issuance of the Administrator's  order,  repairs  had  been  per-
          formed; that the tenant refused access in  October  and  November
          of 1990; that the tenant did not complain about the bedroom door, 
          the apartment door frame, the  kitchen  cabinet  door  or  fallen
          plaster in the bathroom ceiling next to the riser; that the owner 
          was not given the opportunity  o  correct  the  defective  condi-
          tions; that the tenant's "negligence or maliciousness" caused the 
          disrepair; that the owner wants a hearing and the opportunity  to
          check the entire file.

          A search of DHCR records shows that the  owner  made  no  request
          pursuant to the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) to  review  the
          file.

          In answer to the petition, the tenant denied the owner s  allega-
          tions of repair and otherwise asserted the continued existence of 
          twelve remaining items of defective conditions.

          After careful consideration, the Commissioner is of  the  opinion
          that the petition should be granted in part a d  the  Administra-
          tor's order should be modified.

          A careful review of the tenant's complaint reveals that with  one
          exception, the conditions for which the rent was reduced were all 
          mentioned in the complaint.  The tenant's complaint asserts  that
          the apartment door does not close properly which  adequately  put
          the owner on notice that the frame might be defective.  T e  ten-
          ant also complained about  the  kitchen  cabinet  needing  to  be
          replaced which sufficiently alerted the owner to a problem with 


          the cabinet door and the allegation that the bathroom ceiling  is
          leaking was sufficient to put the owner on notice of  the  fallen
          plaster condition.

          The owner is correct, however, that the tenant did  not  complain
          about the bedroom door.  The complaint referred  to  the  bedroom
          windows which the inspector found to be free of defec .   Accord-
          ingly, the $3.00 per  month  rent  reduction  for  this  item  is
          revoked.

          As to the other conditions, the copies of  paid  bills  were  not
          submitted by the owner in  the  proceeding  below  and  prior  to
          issuance of the Administrator's order and are now offered for the 
          first time on appeal to support a  vague  assertion  of  repairs.






          EK 220172-RO
          Thus, this insufficient evidence is beyond the  scope  of  review
          of the administrative appeal which is limited to the  issues  and
          evidence before the Administrator.

          Even if this evidence is to be considered, the tenant denies that 
          the repairs were done and the bills are contradicted  y  the  on-
          site inspection which took place subsequent to the  repair  dates
          indicated on the bills.

          The owner's unsubstantiated assertion  that  the  tenant  refused
          access in October and November of 1990  was  not  raised  in  the
          proceeding below and prior to  issuance  of  the  Administrator's
          order and is now raised as a self-serving, unproven assertion for 
          the first time  on  appeal.   Accordingly,  this  unsubstantiated
          assertion is also beyond the scope of review of th s  administra-
          tive appeal which is limited to the issues  and  evidence  before
          the Administrator.

          The owner's allegation that he was not given the  opportunity  to
          correct the defective conditions is without merit.   It  is  more
          than a year from the time the owner was served and  answered  the
          tenant's complaint to the issuance of the Administrator's  order.
          Despite  such  ample  opportunity  to  investigate  the  tenant's
          complaint and make necessary repairs, the owner failed to do so.

          The owner's unsupported allegation that the tenant's  "negligence
          or maliciousness" caused the disrepair was also not raised in the 
          proceeding below and prior to  issuance  of  the  Administrator's
          order and is now raised as a self-serving, unproven assertion for 
          the first time on appeal. The owner may  pursue  in  a  court  of
          competent jurisdiction other legal remedies  against  the  tenant
          for damage to the owner's property.

          Accordingly, the owner's petition  has  failed  to  outweigh  the
          preponderance of the evidence  submitted  by  the  inspector  who
          confirmed on September  18,  1990,  the  continued  existence  of
          decreased services, warranting a rent reduction.



          THEREFORE, in accordance with the Rent and  Eviction  Regulations
          for New York City, it is,

          ORDERED, that this petition be, and the same hereby  is,  granted
          in part, and that the order of the Rent Administrator be, and the 
          same hereby is, modified to  revoke  the  $3.00  per  month  rent
          reduction for the defective bedroom door but is affirmed  in  all
          other respects.


          ISSUED:



                                                                           
                                                   JOSEPH A. D'AGOSTA
                                                   Acting Deputy Commissioner
    

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