The Maine Department of Health and Human Services will hold a public hearing this afternoon on the state’s new medical marijuana rules.

A law approved by voters last fall creates a state-regulated distribution network including licensed dispensaries and a registry of patients authorized to use marijuana.

The department has proposed detailed rules for the dispensaries and patients and caregivers, who also will be allowed to continue growing their own pot within strict limits. The new rules, which are scheduled to take effect by Jan. 1, 2011, may still be modified based on public comments received during the next 10 days.

A formal public hearing will be held today at 1 p.m. in Room 209 of the Cross Office Building in Augusta. Written comments will be accepted until 5 p.m. June 17.

For more information and to submit comments, go to the DHHS website or call (207) 287-9300.

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