For over 200 years the office of Secretary of State has played an integral role in Kentucky’s history. The delegates to the 1792 Constitutional Convention, and all three Constitutional Conventions thereafter, realized the importance of having a Secretary for the Commonwealth when they mandated the establishment of such an office. Throughout the years we can see the Secretary of State’s Office accepting additional responsibilities as they are assigned by the Executive & Legislative Branches of Kentucky’s government.

The Timeline serves as an informal history of the office itself. We are including complete text of all four of Kentucky Constitutions (as they were originally written), entries from the Governors’ Executive Journals, and other articles that provide an insight into the history, function and development of the office. The Timeline will be updated as additional information becomes available.

We especially thank Charles Zoeller for his generous donation of the text for each of the Kentucky Constitutions. Mr. Zoeller’s data entry enabled staff of the Secretary of State’s Office to have an excellent foundation for the Constitution project and provided us an opportunity to expand the Timeline with additional information.

Disclaimer: This website includes complete text of all four of Kentucky's Constitutions (as originally written), selected Acts of the Kentucky General Assembly, and other articles regarding the office and function of the Kentucky Secretary of State. Additional information will be added to this site periodically. Text included on this website was keyed by the staff of the Kentucky Secretary of State’s Office. Although efforts were made to ensure the accuracy of all material, researchers should consult published versions of Kentucky Acts for official use. "Acts of the Kentucky General Assembly” may be researched at the Kentucky History Center Library, the Department for Libraries & Archives, and the Supreme Court Law Library, all in Frankfort, Kentucky. (Note: Acts included on this site may have been amended or rescinded; the information on this site is included for historical research only.)

Press Release: March 23, 2006, on the Kentucky Secretary of State's Website.

On March 30, 2006, Governor Ernie Fletcher signed House Bill 301, sponsored by Rep. Adrian Arnold (D-Mount Sterling), relating to Kentucky elections. The Bill prohibits the paying of individuals based upon the number of voters registered and designates the violation of the law as a Class B misdemeanor. ("Pay-per-card" voter registration techniques ran rampant across the country in previous elections.) The bill also addresses electioneering by creating an electioneering-free zone around polling locations, governs in-house absentee voting, and gives the State Board of Elections the authority to pass necessary regulations to allow exceptions to the electioneering ban for items such as bumper stickers.

"Pay-per-card" voter registration is when individuals are paid for each voter registration card they return to a sponsoring organization. Most commonly, the individuals gathering their registration cards fill out cards for imaginary individuals or duplicated registrations in order to increase their payment.

Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson thanked Chairman Arnold & Damon Thayer (R-Georgetown) for shepherding HB 301 through the legislative process.