Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Charlie Crist (D-St. Petersburg) released the following statement on securing $10 million in the Commerce, Justice, Science appropriations bill for fiscal year 2020 to address harmful algal blooms, including red tide. This level of funding, a 100% increase from the previous year’s funding, will go towards further research on preparing for and mitigating red tide. The bill advanced through the full Appropriations Committee this afternoon by a vote of 30-22 and is expected on the House floor in the coming weeks.
“Over the past year, Florida’s struggle against red tide reached an unsustainable level. It took a toll on our communities – our beaches, our wildlife, our local businesses, our economy, and our people all endured destructive impacts.
“I could not be more proud to announce this win after months of advocacy and outcry from Pinellas residents. $10 million to address harmful algae blooms puts our community on offense against red tide and blue-green algae. We all remember the awful smell, the fish kills, and the danger to human and marine health that has been plaguing our state. Now is the time to double the federal effort to better understand and eliminate these harmful algae outbreaks.”
A member of the Commerce, Justice, Science Subcommittee, Crist has led on the issue of red tide in Congress: