Newtown approves use of grant money for new school

NEWTOWN, CT - JUNE 14: Cecilia Floros, 10, of Newtown attends a remembrance event on the six month anniversary of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School on June 14, 2013 in Newtown, Connecticut. A a 26-second moment of silence was observed to honor the 20 children and six adults who were killed at the school on Dec. 14. The event also included the reading of the names of over 6,000 people who have been killed by gun violence since the massacre in Newtown. The reading of names is expected to take 12 hours. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

NEWTOWN, Conn. Newtown residents have approved spending $750,000 in grant money from the state of Connecticut to begin work on replacing the school where 26 people were shot to death in December.

The News Times of Danbury reports an overflow crowd of about 200 people attended Wednesday night's town meeting, which is required when local officials consider spending more than $500,000 on any project.

The crowd approved the spending for the new Sandy Hook Elementary School by a unanimous voice vote after a 7-minute meeting.

The money will be used for preparation, design and site work for the school, which will be built once the existing one is demolished.

The town plans an October referendum to approve spending the remainder of the $50 million in state funds set aside for the school.

"This is a very positive statement to the avenue we are proceeding down," Selectman James Gaston told the News-Times.

Meanwhile, local group are preparing to distribute $7.7 million in donations to families of the school shooting victims.