CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — Nevada prisons employees racked up nearly 25 percent more in overtime in the fiscal year that ended in June compared with the year before.

State corrections chief James Dzurenda (zur-EHN'-dah) reported Tuesday in Carson City that the Nevada Department of Corrections accrued $15.5 million in overtime and compensatory pay costs in fiscal 2017.

That was $3 million more than the $12.5 million paid out the previous year, and it amounted to almost one-third of the nearly $47 million overtime total for five state departments all year.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reports (http://bit.ly/2fhPJ0r ) that Dzurenda told the state Board of Examiners that some of the increase is due to inmate trips to hospitals and the cost of covering vacant guard positions.

State lawmakers have questioned the high level of overtime, after approving staffing increases and a 9 percent pay hike for prisons.

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Information from: Las Vegas Review-Journal, http://www.lvrj.com