No Hearing Required on Claimed Relationship Between Landlord and Contractor
LVT Number: 12518
(Decision submitted by Queens attorney Anthony R. Mordente, who represented the landlord.) Facts: Landlord applied for MCI rent hikes based on window replacement throughout the apartment complex. Tenants' association objected to landlord's application, claiming that the cost of the windows was greater than the fair market value of the work. Tenants claimed that there was a relationship between landlord and its contractor and asked the DRA to conduct a hearing. The DRA ruled for landlord without holding a hearing and tenants appealed. The DHCR ruled against tenants, finding that landlord had adequately documented the cost of the MCI through copies of contracts, contractor's statements, and canceled checks. The DHCR found no proof of either a relationship between landlord and its contractor or inflated costs. Tenants appealed, claiming the DHCR's decision was arbitrary and unreasonable. Court: Tenants lose. The DHCR wasn't required to hold a hearing on the issue of landlord's relationship with the contractor, and the DHCR's decision was reasonable based on the documents in its records.
Committee for the Preservation of Fresh Meadows, Inc. v. DHCR: NYLJ, p. 28, col. 4 (7/22/98) (Sup. Ct. Queens; Milano, J)