Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget office provided a sharply worded response to Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s overtime report late Tuesday afternoon calling the findings “baffling” and “flawed.”

Earlier in the day DiNapoli released a report that found state agencies were on track to spend $600 million on overtime, which would set a record in the process.

But the DOB says the report refelcts “an apparent fundamentla misunderstanding” of how the agencies are spending money.

“The Comptroller’s report is baffling — skewed by a shocking lack of context, omission of fact and an apparent fundamental misunderstanding of the state of affairs in a number of agencies,” said DOB spokesman Morris Peters. “This report fails to mention that several Executive-run agencies had to respond to three extreme weather events in the last year as well as major personnel and structural changes made among various agencies to make government more efficient. Most of all, the report is flawed with one key omission: overall personnel costs for Executive-run agencies have decreased $750 million during the course of this administration. Realistically, there will be times when overtime is necessary because the alternative would be forcing taxpayers to fund a larger, more costly and inefficient state government.”

Specifically, they point to:

*The Gaming Commissions showing an increase of overtime between 2012 and 2013, but the commission didn’t exist until February 2013
*The Racing and Wagering Board showed an increase of 68.43 percent in overtime, but ceased to exist in February.
*The Office of IT had a 512 percent increase in overitme compared to last year, but the DOB says the office wasn’t created until November 2012. The previous agency that fulfilled its duties had 501 full-time employees and now has 3,630, with nearly all transferred from other agencies.

The full points are after the jump, but the bottom line for the DOB appears to be this:

“All agencies have remained within their budgets, which were reduced 10 percent at the beginning of this administration and have remained flat.”

This isn’t the first flare up between the DOB and DiNapoli’s office, who often exchange testy responses when presented with reports critical of spending or pension management.

• OSC reports that the Office of Information Technology services had a 512 percent spike in overtime compared to last year, but fails to mention that ITS was only established in November 2012. Its predecessor agency had 501 full time employees — it now has 3,630, virtually all of whom were transferred from other agencies.

• OSC said the Gaming Commission’s overtime increased by 38.45 percent between 2012 and 2013. The Gaming Commission didn’t exist until February 2013.

• OSC says Racing and Wagering Board overtime decreased by 68.43 percent. This is perplexing, since the RWB ceased existing in February 2013.

• The comparison excludes October 2012 through December 2012, the beginning of the state’s mobilized response to Superstorm Sandy, but included the early months of 2013, where the response was still ongoing. Failing to account for this omission leads to an artificial spike.

• Significant DFS resources were used in 2013 to support on-going efforts to help homeowners, renters and business owners recover from property losses caused by Superstorm Sandy. DFS overtime is also attributed to the agency’s continued efforts to help victims of Superstorm Sandy, specifically the weekend deployments of mobile command centers to help homeowners deal with insurance related issues.

• DOT overtime was the result of deferred costs of Sandy, a bulk of which will be reimbursable by the federal government, as well as the Long Island blizzard in February (Nemo) and the Mohawk Valley flooding this past summer.

• Overtime related to Tax and Finance stemmed from the transition to a new vendor to process paper returns. This overtime costs, per the contract with the vendor, will not come at additional taxpayer expense.

• DOCCS has taken steps to address overtime in its facilities. Beginning this past June, the acting commissioner has centralized the review of all overtime, and given specific direction to all Superintendents and Hub-Superintendents that overtime is only to be used to ensure the health, welfare and safety of the system.

• All agencies have remained within their budgets, which were reduced 10 percent at the beginning of this administration and have remained flat.