BARNEGAT TOWNSHIP - A weeklong search in May for a convict who escaped from a minimum security prison in southern New Jersey cost taxpayers more than $180,000 in overtime for law enforcement. reportsĀ a majority of the overtime was for officers with the state Department of Corrections, which led the hunt for Arthur Buckel after he fled Bayside State Prison on May 3.

DOC spokesman Matthew Schuman says the department has a "longstanding mutual aid agreement" with other agencies when assistance is needed. But that agreement doesn't include financial reimbursement for law enforcement entities that provide help to the DOC.

The search focused on Barnegat Township for two days after Buckel was seen entering a store there. Mayor John Novak has requested repayment from the state for nearly $30,000 in overtime.