Health Department Director Lori Ballengee told the Committee that per the loss of the contract with Cooperative Extension for WIC (The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children), Cancer Services, Emergency Preparedness, and the Family Planning Educator, she had, at the behest of Legislator Decker, investigated other agencies in order to maintain the programs as well as retain the affected personnel. Ms. Ballengee entered into discussion with Jones Memorial Hospital (Wellsville), Ardent Solutions (formerly Allegany/Western Steuben Rural Health Network), and Olean General Hospital. Ms. Ballengee told the Committee that Jones Memorial Hospital was not interested. Hospital CEO Eva Benedict felt that the WIC Program does not meet the hospital’s mission, and would defer to Ardent Solutions. She added that Jones would assist with the Cancer Services Program from the medical/clinical aspect if Ardent Solutions were chosen. Ardent Solutions, she said, offers benefits that are not as good as the benefits currently enjoyed by the employees. There is no retirement plan, so employees would need to establish and pay for retirement on their own. Ardent would subcontract the staff to DOH which would maintain the program which is similar to the set-up with Cornell. Ardent wants 33 percent for the fringe package which does not include retirement, and staff would have to pay for some things they don’t now. Ardent also wants 10 percent for administrative overhead which amounts to $47,291 annually. That would be their cost to administer the programs. Ms. Ballengee went on to say that her major concern with Ardent Solutions is that no one on its staff has a medical/clinical background and some of the programs are truly medical/clinical, that, and no retirement offerings are Ms. Ballengee’s main concerns with Ardent Solutions.