Rhode Island is set to become the latest U.S. state to allow same-sex couples to marry.

The state Senate on Wednesday approved a bill to permit same-sex marriage. The bill passed the Rhode Island House in January, and now returns there for a largely procedural vote next week.

Rhode Island's governor supports gay marriage and has said he will sign the bill, which would go into effect August 1.

The District of Columbia and nine other U.S. states permit same-sex marriage.

Legislation to allow it has been introduced in Rhode Island's legislature for almost two decades. But the heavily Roman Catholic state has been a holdout until now.