ALBANY, N.Y. - The amount of overtime State workers have been receiving has been going up, so much so that a new report finds it could hit a record high.
The State Comptroller's Office says State agencies have spent more than $462,000,000 on overtime and that's just in the first nine months of 2013. That's up $65,000,000 from this same time last year. If the trend continues, DiNapoli says it'll hit $600,000,000 dollars by the end of the year.
"As part of controlling budget costs overtime is often an indication of where you need to do a better job of managing your personnel costs," says State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.
According to DiNapoli, the biggest offenders are the Department of Corrections, the Department of Transportation, the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities and the Office of Mental Health
DiNapoli says the report didn't look at what caused the increases, but says he's hoping the agencies will use this as a tool.
"Certainly at a minimum they should review their work schedules," explains DiNapoli, "and make sure they're not unnecessarily having shifts in schedules that happen in a way that promotes more overtime."
CSEA, New York's largest public employees union says the report shouldn't be surprising because the Governor has made it a priority to keep the head count among State workers low.
Steve Madares, the CSEA Spokesman says "Most of the overtime is actually mandated, the employees are required to work it because they don't have enough personnel to actually provide the services."
However, DiNapoli says this overtime could actually lead to bigger costs moving forward.
"Overtime pay is a premium pay," explains DiNapoli, "so it costs more when you pay someone overtime and of course it also goes into the pension calculations, so there could be a long term cost."