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Biltmore Tenants Get $67,500 in Settlement With Landlord

Times Staff Writer

Tenants of the Hollywood Biltmore apartments have accepted a $67,500-offer to settle complaints of landlord harassment during renovation of the structure, attorneys said Thursday.

The settlement includes guarantees that six tenants will be allowed to stay in their rent-controlled apartments despite the upgrading of the building, which had fallen into decay before it was revamped by new owners.

Water Shut Off

It also provides for advance notice and for drinking water and toilet facilities to be supplied in case the water is turned off in the future.

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The tenants had complained that their water was shut off for eight hours a day, five days a week, during most of June, 1987, in what they saw as an effort to force them to move out to make way for higher-paying renters.

The owners said the water had to be stopped to allow for plumbing repairs.

“It was just a campaign of harassment against them so that they’d be so miserable they’d leave, but they didn’t leave,” said Susan Stanley, spokeswoman for Bet Tzedek Legal Services, which represented the tenants.

The settlement was agreed on as volunteer attorney Herbert I. Rosenkrantz was about to file a motion to bring the suit to trial.

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“We had the right to go to trial within 120 days because some of the tenants were over 70,” Rosenkrantz said.

Renovated Pool

Nicki Frank, president of Realty Investors & Property Management Inc., declined to comment immediately on the settlement.

“I’m pleased with the way the building turned out,” she said. “It’s exactly how I designed it.”

She said the Hollywood Biltmore was one of 40 buildings that her firm has renovated in the last four years.

The remodeled building features flowering plants, purple trim, a newly tiled swimming pool and a glassed-in entrance area.


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