The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation announced today that over $155 million dollars in grants has been approved and over 38,000 applications have been received through LMDC's Residential Grant Program. The program provides assistance to residents who lived downtown on September 11, 2001 and continue to reside in Lower Manhattan, as well as offering financial incentives to new residents who make a two-year commitment to live downtown. Residents eligible for the grants may apply online by visiting the Residential Grant Program homepage, or by calling the Residential Grant Application hotline at 1-866 RenewNY (1-866-736-3969). All leases must commence on or prior to Saturday, May 31, 2003 for new residents to be eligible.Lower Manhattan Development Corporation Interim President Kevin M. Rampe said, "The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation is committed to downtown residents. As the rebuilding process goes forward, a thriving community base will be the cornerstone of Lower Manhattan's revitalization. We encourage every eligible Lower Manhattan resident to take advantage of the grant program." The $306 million dollars allocated for the Residential Grant Program is part of a $2 billion grant from HUD's Community Development Block Grant Program. The program establishes three zones of eligibility and offers three types of grants to owners and renters living south of Delancey and Kenmare Streets: the September 11, 2001 Residents Grant, the Family Grant, and the Two-Year Commitment-Based Grant. Funds are distributed based on proximity to Ground Zero.The September 11, 2001 Residents Grant is a one time $1,000 grant available to each housing unit whose residents lived in lower Manhattan on September 11, 2001, and continue to be on-going residents in any of the three zones. The Family Grant, a one time grant of $1,500 or $750 depending on location, is available to housing units with children under the age of 18 that make a one-year commitment to living in lower Manhattan. The Two-Year Commitment-Based Grant is available to residents, per apartment, that make at least a two-year commitment to living in lower Manhattan. Under the program guidelines, Zone 1 is eligible for 30% of the monthly rent (or mortgage payments, plus maintenance costs and real estate and related taxes for owner occupied units), up to $12,000 over two years. And Zone 2 is eligible for 30% of the monthly rent (or mortgage payments, plus maintenance costs and real estate and related taxes for owner-occupied units), up to $6,000 over two years. The Residential Grant program has successfully attracted new residents to the downtown area. Of the applications approved, more than 56% of Zone 1 applicants have identified themselves as new residents. LMDC encourages all area residents who lived in the area prior to September 11, 2001 and remain in the area to apply for the September 11, 2001 Residents Grant. One $1,000 tax free grant is available per housing unit to these residents. If any resident has questions about filling out their application or about how they can provide supporting documentation, they should contact the LMDC hotline at 1-866-RenewNYC or make an appointment at one of the community offices. All applications must be submitted no later than Saturday, May 31, 2003. New residents that move in during May can submit partial applications while they wait to receive their first utility bill or other required supporting documentation.