Bill S494-2013

Allows retroactively to apply the rent reduction based upon failure to maintain services for accommodations regulated by the rent stabilization law

Provides that a rent reduction made pursuant to the rent stabilization law of 1969 and based upon a reduction in services provided by a landlord shall be retroactive to the date occurring 30 days after the date upon which the tenant applied to the division of housing and community renewal for such a reduction.

Details

Actions

  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO HOUSING, CONSTRUCTION AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT
  • Jan 9, 2013: REFERRED TO HOUSING, CONSTRUCTION AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S494

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to rent reduction based upon a failure to maintain services for purposes of the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine

SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 26-514 of the administrative code of the city of New York as amended by chapter 116 of the laws of 1997 is amended.

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: To eliminate the discriminatory practice of granting an owner a major capital improvement increase retroactive to 30 days after the filing date while, at the same time, limiting tenants to a rent reduction only when the decrease in services order is issued.

JUSTIFICATION: Presently, when an owner applies for a major capital improvement increase, he or she is granted the increase retroactive to thirty days after filing for it. It is clearly inequitable that when a tenant files for a rent reduction, based on a decrease in services, that the tenant only gets the reduction from the date an order is issued by the District Rent Administrator, and not retroactive to thirty days after the tenant has filed his or her complaint.

Currently, the State Division of Housing and Community Renewal has a tremendous backlog processing complaints. This proposed change in the law would give owners an incentive to restore an actual decrease in services quickly, since a delay in an administrative determination by DHCR would no longer be financially beneficial.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: This legislation was previously introduced.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall have become law and shall apply to all applications for reductions in rent pending on the effective date of this act or filed on or after such date with the State Division of Housing and Community Renewal pursuant to the provisions of section 26-514 of the Administrative Code of the City of New York; provided that the amendments to section 26-514 of the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty nine made by section one of this act shall expire on the same date as such law expires and shall not affect the expiration of such law as provided under section 26-520 of such law.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 494 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE (PREFILED) January 9, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sen. STAVISKY -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Housing, Construction and Community Development AN ACT to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to rent reduction based upon a failure to maintain services for purposes of the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty- nine THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 26-514 of the administrative code of the city of New York, as amended by chapter 116 of the laws of 1997, is amended to read as follows: S 26-514 Maintenance of services. In order to collect a rent adjust- ment authorized pursuant to the provisions of subdivision d of section 26-510 of this chapter an owner must file with the state division of housing and community renewal, on a form which the commissioner shall prescribe, a written certification that he or she is maintaining and will continue to maintain all services furnished on the date upon which the emergency tenant protection act of nineteen seventy-four becomes a law or required to be furnished by any state law or local law, ordinance or regulation applicable to the premises. In addition to any other reme- dy afforded by law, any tenant may apply to the state division of hous- ing and community renewal, for a reduction in the rent to the level in effect prior to its most recent adjustment and for an order requiring services to be maintained as provided in this section, and the commis- sioner shall so reduce the rent if it is found that the owner has failed to maintain such services. SUCH REDUCTION SHALL BE RETROACTIVE TO THE DATE OCCURRING THIRTY DAYS AFTER THE DATE UPON WHICH THE TENANT APPLIED TO THE DIVISION FOR SUCH A REDUCTION. The owner shall also be barred from applying for or collecting any further rent increases. The restora-
tion of such services shall result in the prospective elimination of such sanctions. The owner shall be supplied with a copy of the applica- tion and shall be permitted to file an answer thereto. A hearing may be held upon the request of either party, or the commissioner may hold a hearing upon his or her own motion. The commissioner may consolidate the proceedings for two or more petitions applicable to the same building or group of buildings or development. If the commissioner finds that the owner has knowingly filed a false certification, it shall, in addition to abating the rent, assess the owner with the reasonable costs of the proceeding, including reasonable attorneys' fees, and impose a penalty not in excess of two hundred fifty dollars for each false certification. The amount of the reduction in rent ordered by the state division of housing and community renewal under this [subdivision] SECTION shall be reduced by any credit, abatement or offset in rent which the tenant has received pursuant to section two hundred thirty-five-b of the real prop- erty law, that relates to one or more conditions covered by such order. S 2. This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall have become a law and shall apply to all applications for reductions in rent pending on the effective date of this act or filed on or after such date with the state division of housing and community renewal pursuant to the provisions of section 26-514 of the administrative code of the city of New York; provided that the amendments to section 26-514 of the rent stabilization law of nineteen hundred sixty-nine made by section one of this act shall expire on the same date as such law expires and shall not affect the expiration of such law as provided under section 26-520 of such law.

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