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Oxford Law Citator
Part One The History of the Kentucky Constitution
The History and Development of the Kentucky Constitution
The Road to Statehood
The First Constitution
The Second Constitution
The Third Constitution
The Fourth Constitution
Revising the Constitution
Part Two The Kentucky Constitution and Commentary
Bill of Rights
s.1 Rights of life, liberty, worship, pursuit of safety and happiness, free speech, acquiring and protecting property, peaceable assembly, redress of grievances, bearing arms.
s.2 Absolute and arbitrary power denied.
s.3 Men are equal; no exclusive grant except for public services; property not to be exempted from taxation; grants revocable.
s.4 Power inherent in the people; right to alter, reform, or abolish government.
s.5 Right of religious freedom.
s.6 Elections to be free and equal.
s.7 Right of trial by jury.
s.8 Freedom of speech and of the press.
s.9 Truth may be given in evidence in prosecution for publishing matters proper for public information; jury to try law and facts in libel prosecutions.
s.10 Security from search and seizure; conditions of issuance of warrant.
s.11 Rights of accused in criminal prosecution; change of venue.
s.12 Indictable offense not to be prosecuted by information; exceptions.
s.13 Double jeopardy; property not to be taken for public use without compensation.
s.14 Right of judicial remedy for injury; speedy trial.
s.15 Laws to be suspended only by General Assembly.
s.16 Right to bail; habeas corpus.
s.17 Excessive bail or fine, or cruel punishment, prohibited.
s.18 Imprisonment for debt restricted.
s.19 Ex post facto law or law impairing contract forbidden; rules of construction for mineral deeds relating to coal extraction.
s.20 Attainder, operation of restricted.
s.21 Descent in case of suicide or casualty.
s.22 Standing armies restricted; military subordinate to civil; quartering soldiers restricted.
s.23 No office of nobility or hereditary distinction, or for longer than a term of years.
s.24 Emigration to be free.
s.25 Slavery and involuntary servitude forbidden.
s.26 General powers subordinate to Bill of Rights; laws contrary thereto are void.
Distribution of the Powers of Government
s.27 Powers of government divided among legislative, executive, and judicial departments.
s.28 One department not to exercise power belonging to another.
The Legislative Departmen
s.29 Legislative power vested in General Assembly.
s.30 Term of office of Senators and Representatives.
s.31 Time of election and term of office of Senators and Representatives.
s.32 Qualifications of Senators and Representatives.
s.33 Senatorial and Representative districts.
s.34 Officers of Houses of General Assembly.
s.35 Number of Senators and Representatives.
s.36 Time and place of meetings of General Assembly.
s.37 Majority constitutes quorum; powers of less than a quorum.
s.38 Each House to judge qualifications, elections, and returns of its members; contests.
s.39 Powers of each House as to rules and conduct of members; contempt; bribery.
s.40 Journals; when vote to be entered.
s.41 Adjournment during session.
s.42 Compensation of members; length of sessions; legislative day.
Sch.to Section 42
s.43 Privileges from arrest and from questioning as to speech or debate.
s.44 Ineligibility of members to civil office created or given increased compensation during term.
s.45 Collector of public money ineligible unless he has quietus.
s.46 Bills must be reported by committee, printed, and read; how bill called from committee; votes required for passage.
s.47 Bills to raise revenue must originate in House of Representatives.
s.48 Resources of Sinking Fund not to be diminished; preservation of fund.
s.49 Power to contract debts; limit.
s.50 Purposes for which debt may be contracted; tax to discharge; public vote.
s.51 Law may not relate to more than one subject, to be expressed in title; amendments must be at length.
s.52 General Assembly may not release debt to State or to county or city.
s.53 Investigation of accounts of Treasurer and Auditor; report, publication, submission to Governor and General Assembly.
s.54 No restriction on recovery for injury or death.
s.55 When laws to take effect; emergency legislation.
s.56 Signing of bills; enrollment; presentation to Governor.
s.57 Member having personal interest to make disclosure and not vote.
s.58 General Assembly not to audit nor allow private claim; exception; appropriations.
s.59 Local and special legislation.
s.60 General law not to be made special or local by amendment; no special powers or privileges; law not to take effect on approval of other authority than General Assembly; exceptions.
s.61 Provision to be made for local option on sale of liquor; time of elections.
s.62 Style of laws.
Counties and County Seats
s.63 Area of counties; boundaries; creation and abolishment of counties.
s.64 Division of county or removal of county seat, election required; minimum population of county.
s.65 Striking territory from county; liability for indebtedness.
s.66 Power of impeachment vested in house.
s.67 Trial of impeachments by Senate.
s.68 Civil officers liable to impeachment; judgment; criminal liability.
The Executive Department
Officers for the State at Large
s.69 Executive power vested in Governor.
s.70 Election of Governor and Lieutenant Governor; term; tie vote.
Schedule to Section 70 (Also applicable to Sections 71–74 , 82–87 , 91 , 93–95 , 97 , 99 , 148 , 167 .)
s.71 Gubernatorial succession.
s.72 Qualifications of Governor and Lieutenant Governor; duties of Lieutenant Governor.
s.73 When terms of Governor and Lieutenant Governor begin.
s.74 Compensation of Governor and Lieutenant Governor.
s.75 Governor is Commander-in-Chief of army, navy, and militia.
s.76 Power of Governor to fill vacancies.
s.77 Power of Governor to remit fines and forfeitures, grant reprieves and pardons; no power to remit fees.
s.78 Governor may require information from state officers.
s.79 Reports and recommendations to General Assembly.
s.80 Governor may call extraordinary session of General Assembly, adjourn General Assembly.
s.81 Governor to enforce laws.
s.82 Succession of Lieutenant Governor.
s.84 When Lieutenant Governor to act as Governor; President of the Senate not to preside at impeachment of Governor; certification of disability of Governor.
s.85 President of Senate; election; powers.
s.86 Compensation of President of the Senate.
s.87 Who is to act as Governor in absence of Lieutenant Governor and President of the Senate.
s.88 Signature of bills by Governor; veto; passage over veto; partial veto.
s.89 Concurrent orders and resolutions on same footing as bill.
s.90 Contest of election for Governor or Lieutenant Governor.
s.91 Constitutional State officers; election; qualification; term of office; duties; Secretary of State to record acts of Governor and report them to General Assembly.
s.92 Qualifications of Attorney General.
s.93 Succession of elected Constitutional State officers; duties; inferior officers and members of boards and commissions.
s.95 Time of election of elected Constitutional State officers.
s.96 Compensation of Constitutional State officers.
Officers for Districts and Counties
s.97 Commonwealth’s Attorney and Circuit Court Clerk; election; term.
s.98 Compensation of Commonwealth’s Attorney.
s.99 County officers, justices of the peace, and constables; election; term.
s.100 Qualifications of officers for counties and districts.
s.101 Qualifications and jurisdiction of constables.
s.102 Officers for new counties.
s.103 Bonds of county officers and other officers.
s.104 Abolishment of office of assessor; assessor may not succeed himself.
s.105 Consolidation of offices of sheriff and jailer.
s.106 Fees of county officers; fees in counties having seventy-five thousand population or more.
s.107 Additional county or district offices may be created.
s.108 Abolishment of office of commonwealth’s attorney.
The Judicial Department
s.109 The judicial power; unified system; impeachment.
The Supreme Court
s.110 Composition; jurisdiction; quorum; special justices; districts; Chief Justice.
The Court of Appeals
s.111 Composition; jurisdiction; administration; panels.
The Circuit Court
s.112 Location; circuits; composition; administration; jurisdiction.
Schedule to Section 112
The District Court
s.113 Location; districts; composition; administration; trial commissioners; jurisdiction.
Clerks of Courts
s.114 Selection; removal.
Appellate Policy; Rule-Making Power
s.115 Right of appeal; procedure.
s.116 Rules governing jurisdiction, personnel, procedure, bar membership.
Offices of Justices and Judges
s.119 Terms of office.
s.120 Compensation; expenses.
s.121 Retirement and removal.
s.123 Prohibited activities.
s.124 Conflicting provisions.
Schedule to Section 124
s.140 County Court for each county; Judge; compensation; commission; removal.
Justices of the Peace
s.142 Justices’ districts; one Justice for each district; jurisdiction and powers of Justices; commissions; removal.
s.144 Fiscal Court for each county; to consist of Justices of the Peace or Commissioners, and County Judge; quorum.
Suffrage and Elections
s.145 Persons entitled to vote.
s.146 Soldiers or sailors stationed in State are not residents.
s.147 Registration of voters; manner of voting; absent voting; voting machines; election defined; election laws; illiterate and disabled voters.
s.148 Number of elections; day and hours of election; qualifications of officers; employees to be given time to vote.
s.149 Privilege from arrest during voting.
s.150 Disqualification from office for using money or property to secure or influence election; corporation not to use money or other thing of value to influence election; exclusion from office for conviction of felony or high misdemeanor; laws to regulate elections.
s.151 Person guilty of fraud, intimidation, bribery, or corrupt practice to be deprived of office by suitable statutory means.
s.152 Vacancies; when filled by appointment, when by election; who to fill.
s.153 Power of General Assembly as to elections.
s.154 Laws as to sale or gift of liquor on election days.
s.155 School elections not governed by Constitution.
s.156a General Assembly authorized to provide for creation, governmental structure, and classification of cities.
s.156b General Assembly authorized to permit municipal home rule for cities.
s.157 Maximum tax rate for cities, counties, and taxing districts.
s.157a Credit of Commonwealth may be loaned or given to county for roads; county may vote to incur indebtedness and levy additional tax for roads.
s.157b Adoption of budget required for cities, counties, and taxing districts; expenditures not to exceed revenues for fiscal year.
s.158 Maximum indebtedness of cities, counties, and taxing districts; General Assembly authorized to set additional limits and conditions.
s.159 Tax to pay indebtedness in not more than forty years must be levied.
s.160 Municipal officers; election and term of office; officers ineligible; fiscal officers.
s.161 Compensation of city, county, or municipal officer not to be changed after election or appointment or during term, nor term extended.
s.162 Unauthorized contracts of cities, counties, and municipalities are void.
s.163 Public utilities must obtain franchise to use streets.
s.164 Term of franchises limited; advertisement and bids.
s.165 Incompatible offices and employments.
s.166 Expiration of city charters granted prior to Constitution.
s.167 Time of election of city, urban-county, and town officers.
s.168 Ordinance not to fix less penalty than statute for same offense; prosecution under one a bar.
Revenue and Taxation
s.169 Fiscal year.
s.170 Property exempt from taxation; cities may exempt factories for five years.
s.171 State tax to be levied; taxes to be levied and collected for public purposes only and by general laws, and to be uniform within classes; classification of property for taxation; bonds exempt; referendum on act classifying property.
s.172 Property to be assessed at fair cash value; punishment of assessor for willful error.
s.172a Assessment for ad valorem tax purposes of agricultural and horticultural land.
s.172b Property assessment or reassessment moratoriums.
s.173 Officer receiving profit on public funds guilty of felony.
s.174 Property to be taxed according to value, whether corporate or individual; income, license, and franchise taxes.
s.175 Power to tax property not to be surrendered.
s.176 Commonwealth not to assume debt of county or city; exception.
s.177 Commonwealth not to lend credit, nor become stockholder in corporation, nor build railroad or highway.
s.178 Law for borrowing money to specify purpose, for which alone money may be used.
s.179 Political subdivision not to become stockholder in corporation, or appropriate money or lend credit to any person, except for roads or State Capitol.
s.180 Act or ordinance levying any tax must specify purpose, for which alone money may be used.
s.181 General Assembly may not levy tax for political subdivision, but may confer power; license and excise taxes; city taxes in lieu of ad valorem taxes.
s.182 Railroad taxes; how assessed and collected.
s.183 General Assembly to provide for school system.
s.184 Common school fund; what constitutes; use; vote on tax for education other than in common schools.
s.185 Interest on school fund; investment.
s.186 Distribution and use of school fund.
s.187 Race or color not to affect distribution of fund.
s.188 Refund of Federal direct tax part of school fund; irredeemable bond.
s.189 School money not to be used for church, sectarian, or denominational school.
s.190 Regulation of Corporations by General Assembly.
s.195 Corporation property subject to eminent domain; corporations not to infringe upon individuals.
s.196 Regulation of common carriers; no relief from common-law liability.
s.197 Free passes or reduced rates to officers forbidden.
s.199 Telegraph and telephone companies; right to construct lines; exchange of messages.
s.201 Public utility company not to consolidate with, acquire or operate competing or parallel system; common carriers not to share earnings with one not carrying; telephone companies excepted under certain conditions.
s.204 Bank officer liable for receiving deposit for insolvent bank.
s.205 Forfeiture of corporate charters in case of abuse or detrimental use.
s.206 Warehouses subject to legislative control; inspection; protection of patrons.
Railroads and Commerce
s.210 Common carrier corporation not to be interested in other business.
s.211 Foreign railroad corporation may not condemn or acquire real estate.
s.212 Rolling stock, earnings, and personal property of railroads subject to execution or attachment.
s.213 Railroad companies to handle traffic with connecting carriers without discrimination.
s.214 Railroad not to make exclusive or preferential contract.
s.215 Freight to be handled without discrimination.
s.216 Railroad must allow tracks of others to cross or unite.
s.217 Penalties for violating sections 213, 214, 215, or 216; Attorney General to enforce.
s.218 Long and short hauls.
s.219 Militia, what to consist of.
s.220 General Assembly to provide for militia; exemptions from service.
s.221 Government of militia to conform to Army regulations.
s.222 Officers of militia; Adjutant General.
s.223 Safekeeping of public arms, military records, relics, and banners.
s.224 Bonds; what officers to give; liability on.
s.225 Armed men not to be brought into State; exception.
s.226 State lottery; charitable lotteries and charitable gift enterprises; other lotteries and gift enterprises forbidden.
s.227 Prosecution and removal of local officers for misfeasance, malfeasance, or neglect.
s.228 Oath of officers and attorneys.
s.229 Treason defined; evidence necessary to convict.
s.230 Money not to be drawn from Treasury unless appropriated; annual publication of accounts; certain revenues usable only for highway purposes.
s.231 Suits against the Commonwealth.
s.232 Manner of administering oath.
s.233 General laws of Virginia in force in this State until repealed.
s.233a Valid or recognized marriage; legal status of unmarried individuals.
s.234 Residence and place of office of public officers.
s.235 Salaries of public officers not to be changed during term; deductions for neglect.
s.236 When officers to enter upon duties.
s.237 Federal office incompatible with state office.
s.238 Discharge of sureties on officers’ bonds.
s.239 Disqualification from office for presenting or accepting challenge to duel; further punishment.
s.240 Pardon of person convicted of dueling.
s.241 Recovery for wrongful death.
s.242 Just compensation to be made in condemning private property; right of appeal; jury trial.
s.243 Child labor.
s.244 Wage-earners in industry or of corporations to be paid in money.
s.244a Old age assistance.
s.245 Revision of statutes to conform to Constitution.
s.246 Maximum limit on compensation of public officers.
s.247 Public printing; contract for; officers not to have interest in; Governor to approve.
s.248 Juries; number of jurors; three-fourths may indict or give verdict.
s.249 Employees of General Assembly; number and compensation.
s.250 Arbitration, method for to be provided.
s.251 Limitation of actions to recover possession of land based on early patents.
s.252 Houses of reform to be established and maintained.
s.253 Working of penitentiary prisoners; when and where permitted.
s.254 Control and support of convicts; leasing of labor.
s.255 Frankfort is state capital.
Mode of Revision
s.256 Amendments to Constitution; how proposed and voted upon.
s.257 Publication of proposed amendments.
s.258 Constitutional Convention; how proposed, voted upon, and called.
s.259 Number and qualifications of delegates.
s.260 Election of delegates; meeting.
s.261 Certification of election and compensation of delegates.
s.262 Determination of election and qualifications of delegates; contests.
s.263 Notice of election on question of calling Convention.
Table of Cases
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Table of Cases
The Kentucky State Constitution (2nd Edition)
Robert M. Ireland
US Constitutional Law [USC]
Oxford Commentaries on the State Constitutions of the United States
Published in print:
10 January 2013