Matter of 99 Riverside Dr. Tenants Assoc. v. NYS Division of Housing & Community Renewal
NEW YORK COUNTY
Justice Cynthia Kern
A tenants association challenged a final order by the state Division of Housing and Community Renewal. The tenants filed an application for a rent reduction based on decreased building-wide services, claiming they lost use of public roof space and basement bicycle storage space. The building owner stated access to the storage was a de minimis condition and not provided under specific leases. DHCR's rent administrator reduced rents for rent-controlled and rent-stabilized tenants, concluding owner reduced services. The owner filed a petition for administrative review, and the commissioner reversed the order, finding the failure to provide roof access and the removal of the storage constituted de minimis conditions under the Rent Stabilization Code and thus did not warrant imposition of rent reductions. The tenants challenged the order in this Article 78 proceeding. But the court found the order had a rational basis, stating the commissioner's finding that discontinuation of the roof area and storage space was de minimis and did not warrant a rent reduction.