As the search for two convicted killers enters its 10th day, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is directing the state inspector general to investigate how Richard Matt and David Sweat were able to escape Clinton Correctional Facility.

Inspector General Catherine Leahy Scott will be able to contract with a “respect outside expert” on prisons and law enforcement that includes knowledge of prison design, operations and security procedures.

Scott, who has subpoena power, is also being directing to recommend potential changes to security at prisons in order to prevent future escapes.

“Capturing these killers and returning them to state custody remains our top priority – however, it’s critically important to examine the circumstances that enabled these inmates to escape in the first place,” Cuomo said in a statement.

Asked last week about whether a broader investigation would be launched into how Matt and Sweat were able to escape the prison, the governor at the time indicated the search was the main focal point at the moment.

“This was the first escape in the prison’s history, from the maximum security portion of it,” Cuomo said at the time. “There’s nothing to be embarrassed about — first escape since 1865. It’s not a bad record. We don’t know exactly what happened here.”

But questions have arisen in the last several days, including from state lawmakers, about whether budget cuts and staffing levels at state prison facilities may have played a role.

The IG’s investigation comes after the Friday arrest of Joyce Mitchell, an employee at the prison who prosecutors say provided the escapees with material support. Mitchell allegedly was designated to pick up both men in her car, but she checked herself into a hospital instead with an apparent panic attack.

Cuomo indicated the investigation would consider whether anyone else aided the convicts in their escape.

“We have zero tolerance for anyone who aided or abetted these criminals, no matter how minor their role,” Cuomo said. “Make no mistake: any individual found to have assisted in this escape will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

The search continues today in the North Country for the two men, and more than 800 law enforcement officers from local, state and federal agencies are assisting in the search. The state has offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to their capture.