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Graham Court Owners Corp. v. Division of Housing and Community Renewal

NEW YORK SUPREME COURT, APPELLATE DIVISION, FIRST DEPARTMENT


March 16, 2010

IN RE GRAHAM COURT OWNERS CORP., PETITIONER-APPELLANT,
v.
DIVISION OF HOUSING AND COMMUNITY RENEWAL, RESPONDENT-RESPONDENT,
KYLE TAYLOR, RESPONDENT-INTERVENOR-RESPONDENT.

Judgment, Supreme Court, New York County (Lewis Bart Stone, J.), entered November 24, 2008, denying the petition and dismissing the proceeding, unanimously affirmed, without costs.

Published by New York State Law Reporting Bureau pursuant to Judiciary Law § 431.

This opinion is uncorrected and subject to revision before publication in the Official Reports.

Friedman, J.P., Catterson, McGuire, Acosta, Renwick, JJ.

103432/08

Respondent DHCR's determination of rent overcharge was properly upheld based on its rejection of petitioner owner's documentation for the claimed improvements (see Matter of Mayfair York Co. v New York State Div. of Hous. & Community Renewal, 240 AD2d 158 [1997]), some of which, such as painting, plastering and floor maintenance, did not in any event constitute improvements (see id.), and the owner's resulting failure to carry its burden of establishing entitlement to a major capital improvement increase (see Rent Stabilization Code [9 NYCRR] § 2522.4[a][1]; Matter of 985 Fifth Ave. v State Div. of Hous. & Community Renewal, 171 AD2d 572, 574-575 [1991], lv denied 78 NY2d 861 [1991]). DHCR's discrediting of the owners' documentation for some of the claimed improvements permissibly tainted its view of others (see Matter of Lucot, Inc. v Gabel, 20 AD2d 94, 97 [1963], affd 15 NY2d 774 [1965]).

Treble damages were properly imposed because the owner failed to establish that its overcharges were not willful (see Matter of 425 3rd Ave. Realty Co. v New York State Div. of Hous. & Community Renewal, 29 AD3d 332, 333 [2006]).

We have considered the owner's other contentions and find them unavailing.

THIS CONSTITUTES THE DECISION AND ORDER OF THE SUPREME COURT, APPELLATE DIVISION, FIRST DEPARTMENT.

20100316

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