Thirty-five legal services providers and 59 housing counseling agencies will share in the first $20 million in grants under a state program to aid New Yorkers facing foreclosure, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced yesterday. The exact size of individual grants was withheld pending the signing of contracts. The grants take effect Oct. 1.

The funding represents the first year of a three-year, $60 million foreclosure aid program. Half of the funding will go to groups in New York City ($6.9 million) and on Long Island ($3.1 million), according to the attorney general, areas with the highest incidences of foreclosures.

Groups in line for the funding include the Legal Aid Society of New York City, MFY Legal Services, Touro Law Center, the Nassau County Bar Association, the New York Legal Assistance Group, the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project and the Nassau/Suffolk Law Service Committee. In addition, Schneiderman said “anchor partners” have been chosen to coordinate training, technical assistance and other support services for providers. The Center for New York City Neighborhoods will monitor programs in the city and the Empire Justice Center will monitor programs outside the city.

Funds for the program are coming through a national settlement of foreclosure abuses announced in February with the five largest mortgage servicing banks, 49 states and the federal government.