The House on Monday approved an amendment that would transfer a 34-acre parcel of agricultural land in Newtown to be used as an animal sanctuary established in memory of a student killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
The measure, backed by both Newtown First Selectman Pat Llodra and Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, will enable the Catherine Violet Hubbard Foundation to operate the sanctuary. It now moves to the state Senate for consideration.
Catherine was one of 20 children killed on Dec. 14, 2012. A big-hearted first-grader, she loved all animals, from the tiny caterpillars she’d carry in mason jars to her beloved dog Samantha to the horses whose noses she loved to pet.
The Catherine Violet Hubbard Animal Sanctuary will reflect that compassion for animals by providing adoptive services for companion animals such as dogs and cats, refuge for farm animals and a rescue and release program for native wildlife.
The sanctuary started as a collaborative “labor of love” between the Hubbard family and the Animal Center in Newtown, an all-volunteer, nonprofit rescue organization.
The center currently lacks a shelter of its own; it runs its rescue programs entirely through a volunteer foster network.
Organizers hope to open the sanctuary within five years.