TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/AP) — Algae blooms have become a major problem along Florida’s coastlines.

A bill aimed at controlling and alleviating red tide blooms was unanimously passed by the Florida Senate.

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The bill passed Thursday would provide $3 million a year for the next six years to research red tide.

The research would be a partnership between the state Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Mote Marine Laboratory.

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Florida recently experienced one of its largest red tide blooms in its recorded history. The 15-month bloom caused respiratory irritations in people and killed sea turtles, manatees, dolphins and fish.

Bill sponsor Republican Sen. Joe Gruters said the state has traditionally spent money on red tide research during a bloom, but the money dries up when the bloom ends.

A companion bill is awaiting a House vote.

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(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)