Zadroga Bill Coverage Expands North to Reade Street Regulations proposed on Tuesday would expand the area of people

eligible under the Zadroga Bill to those who live on Reade Street south. By Kareem Johnson DNAInfo Reporter/Producer LOWER MANHATTAN ± A new federal proposal will expand the area of those eligible for funds from the Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act. The $2.7 billion fund was created for first responders and volunteers who were sickened at Ground Zero on September 11. The new expanded area includes the area of Reade Street south between the Hudson and East rivers, the Daily News reported on Wednesday. Special Master Sheila Birnbaum released the regulation proposal 34 days after her appointment. ³Over the past month, I have received invaluable input from the many individuals I have met with, and I hope to meet with many more over the coming months,´ Birnbaum said in a statement. ³Among other things, the new regulations propose a process by which claimants from the first VCF [Victims Compensation Fund] can amend their claims to reflect new injuries, and also provide for the VCF to cover additional diseases as scientific knowledge evolves.´ ³We applaud the proposal to expand the boundaries of the area to Lower Manhattan south of Reade Street between the two rivers. It is only fair, it is only right that the Lower Manhattan and workers and residents exposed to smoke and other particulates from the collapse of the towers on September 11, 2001 and in the aftermath be included in the coverage,´ Community Board 1 Chairperson Julie Menin said in a statement. ³We also hope that cancer will be added to the list of conditions covered by the 9/11 Health Act, but the geographic expansion of coverage is an important victory for our community.´ The FeelGood Foundation echoed Menin¶s statement, adding, ³Although we are disheartened that cancers will not be presumptively covered under the VCF, we will continue our lobbying efforts for inclusion of various cancers as recognized 9/11 related illnesses. We firmly believe that the medical evidence will soon establish what we, the First Responder community, already know, that various forms of cancer have been caused by our exposure to the toxins at Ground Zero.´ State Representatives Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), and Peter King (R-NY), authors of H.R. 847 issued a joint statement on the proposed regulations. ³Thousands of 9/11 responders and survivors have been waiting to be compensated for their injuries, so we applaud Ms. Birnbaum¶s efforts to release these draft regulations for public comment so quickly ± indeed, only 34 days after she was appointed. The release of these draft regulations begins the complicated and difficult process of implementing the Zadroga law and delivering long-overdue help to those in need.´ The proposed regulations will be open for public comment for 45 days. ³It is important that the Special Master hear from the people who have become ill since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, to hear their stories and struggles so that they may be taken into account in the final draft of these rules,´ the Foundation said.