NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Mayor Bill de Blasio is asking New York City landlords to make vacant units in their buildings available to homeless families in exchange for cash rewards.

The mayor is making the appeal in recorded 45-second telephone messages.

In the robocall, he tells landlords they have an opportunity to fill vacancies in their building and receive a $1,000 bonus from the city. The bonus is in addition to city funds that help homeless families with rent.

“We are investing in placing responsible and ready sheltered families in good, affordable housing,” de Blasio says in the call. “Responsible residents are ready to move into homes and we are ready to work with you.”

The families are expected to pay 30 percent of their income toward rent and the city will offer subsidies ranging from $1,200 to $2,500 a month, WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reported.

The Daily News says the money will come from the city’s new Living in Communities Rental Assistance program.

Patrick Marquis of the Coalition for the Homeless calls the mayor’s outreach great news.

“The program is going to help around 4,000 homeless families and children move from homeless shelters into permanent housing,” he said.

The goal of the program is to move families from the shelter system into homes. Many families who qualify have full-time jobs but cannot meet moving and rent costs.

For more information on the Living in Communities Rental Assistance program, click here.

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