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Election Administration in Kentucky

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Election Types and Dates

Election Dates

Upcoming Primary Elections

The primary election is May 17, 2016.

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-04)

Election Calendars, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

2016 Kentucky Election Calendar, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Upcoming General Elections

The general election is November 8, 2016.

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-04)

Ky. Const. § 148 [link]

Election Calendars, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

2016 Kentucky Election Calendar, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

How is a nominee determined?

How is a nominee determined (caucus, primary, convention)?

Primary election.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 118.105 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 118.105 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Political Party Affiliation

Can voters register by party in the state?

Yes.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-01)

Ky. State Bd. of Elections, Official Voter Registration Form (Mar. 2009) [link]

Register to Vote, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Must voters be registered with a political party if they would like to vote on that party’s candidates in a partisan primary election (i.e., are primaries open or closed)?

Closed, except in nonpartisan races. Voters in partisan primaries must have been registered with the party whose primary they want to vote in since December 31st of the previous year. New registrants after December 31 of the year before the primary must have been continuously registered with that party since they registered to vote. However, any registered voter can vote in primary elections for nonpartisan races.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

Register to Vote, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

When can a voter change or switch their party affiliation?

At any time when registration is open. However, to be eligible to vote in a political party's primary election, the voter must be registered with that party by December 31 of the previous year.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.045 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Register to Vote, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.045 [link]

Voter Registration

Who Can Vote?

What are the state's residency requirements for voters?

To register to vote, a person must live in Kentucky on later than the voter registration deadline.

Homeless voters may register in the precinct where they live regardless of whether that is a traditional home Homeless applicants should include enough information about their home on their voter registration application for the election official to assign the person a precinct.

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-22)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.035 (state website) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.035 (Justia 2014 website) [link]

Conversation with State Board of Elections Staff, August 11, 2015 [link]

Can someone pre-register to vote if they will not be 18 years old by the next election? If so, who?

Yes, 17-year-olds who will be 18 by the next GENERAL election may register to vote if otherwise qualified.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Can 17-year-olds who will be 18-year-olds by the general election vote in the primary?

Yes.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.055 [link]

Does the state take away the right to vote from persons convicted of certain crimes? If so, what crimes?

Yes, anyone convicted of a felony loses the right to vote until the person’s civil rights are restored by executive pardon.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Const. § 145 [link]

Check List for Voter Registration Drive, Kentucky State Board of Elections [link]

If people lose the right to vote because of a criminal conviction, can they regain the right to vote? How?

Only an executive pardon by the governor can restore voting rights of a person convicted of a felony. To obtain this, a person with a felony conviction can submit a Restoration of Civil Rights form, which is available [here].

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Const. § 145 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Voter Registration Options

Is fully online voter registration available? (i.e., can voters fill in and submit an online application without printing and signing it?)

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Register to Vote, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Does the state accept the National Mail Registration Form?

Yes. Click here to download the form.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

Federal Voter Registration Application: State Instructions (Kentucky), Election Assistance Comm’n 9, (last updated Mar. 1, 2006). [link]

Is the state required to register voters at public assistance agencies and driver's license agencies, per the National Voter Registration Act of 1993?

Yes.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

About the National Voter Registration Act, U.S. Dep’t. of Justice, (last updated Aug. 8, 2015) [link]

Student-Specific Rules

Does the state have specific rules on students registering to vote or voting?

No special requirements.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Voter Registration Deadlines

When is the voter registration deadline?

29 days before the election (the fifth Monday before an election is the last day registration is open). If the last day of registration falls on a state or federal holiday, the period runs until the end of the next day which is not a Saturday or Sunday nor a state or federal holiday.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.045 [link]

Ky. State Bd. of Elections, Official Voter Registration Form (Mar. 2009) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.045 [link]

How is the deadline enforced for mailed applications?

The application must be clearly postmarked by the deadline, or if there is no postmark, it must be received by the appropriate county clerk by the deadline.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.0452 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.0452 [link]

When must a voter make changes to their registration for the changes to be in effect before the person seeks to vote?

Voters must update their voter registration record before the voter registration deadline. However, voters who move within the state or change their name without updating their voter registration information by this deadline may still be able to cast a ballot and update their information at the polls (see subsection below, “Voters Who Have Moved or Changed Their Name”).

Source (confirmed on: 2015-11-10)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Voter Registration Drives

Does the state require organizations conducting voter registration drives to register?

No.

Are there restrictions on getting voter registration forms?

Any individual or group is required to have access to a reasonable number of voter registration applications, including federal applications, in the county clerk's office. The person or group must act under the proper supervision and directions of the county clerk and return completed forms to the county clerk for official registration.

The State Board of Elections Check List for Voter Registration drives indicates that drives should request cards from their local county clerk, or for a substantial number of cards, should contact the State Board of Elections. The Check List also indicates that election officials can direct voters to the state's website to print out the online voter registration application

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-22)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.045 (state website) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.045 (Justia 2014 website) [link]

Ky. Board of Elections, Check List for Voter Registration Drive [link]

Does the state require any training in order to conduct voter registration drives?

No.

Does the state have restrictions on who may help others register to vote?

No.

Does the state have restrictions on paying drive workers, or additional rules related to payment?

Yes. It is a Class B misdemeanor for any person to provide compensation or make any such expenditure as payment or consideration for registering voters that is based upon the total number of voters a person registers or the total number of voters a person registers in a particular party, political group, political organization, or voters of independent status.

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-22)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 119.207 (state website) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 119.207 (Justia 2014 website) [link]

Are there restrictions on the voter registration drive offering something of value to a person in exchange for completing a voter registration application?

Federal law states that whoever "pays or offers to pay or accepts payment either for registration to vote or for voting shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than five years." At least one federal appellate court has interpreted "payment" as "intended to include forms of pecuniary value offered or given directly to an individual voter, and indicated the value should be based on "an assessment of the monetary worth of an item from the perspective of the voter receiving the item." That case held that food vouchers could be "payment."

Another example is California's Secretary of State's interpretation of the federal law to mean that "Any type of incentive is considered 'payment,' even things as seemingly innocent as cookies or admission to an entertainment event."

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-22)

52 U.S.C. § 10307(c) [link]

United States v. Garcia, 719 F.2d 99, 102-103 (5th Cir. 1983) [link]

California Secretary of State's Guide to Voter Registration Drives, p. 11 [link]

Must the registration drive worker sign the completed voter registration application, and must the drive or canvasser place other information on applications?

Kentucky election law does not address this issue.

Does the state have a rule requiring a receipt or other tracking information to be provided to the applicant?

No.

Are there restrictions on copying completed voter registration applications prior to submitting them to the election official, or other restrictions on data entry or disclosure?

Kentucky election law does not address this issue.

Is there a time limit for voter registration groups to submit the voter registration applications they collect?

Applications must be turned in to the appropriate county clerk by the voter registration deadline.

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-22)

Check List for Voter Registration Drive [link]

What are the consequences for failing to submit applications on time?

It is a Class D felony to willfully fail to return a completed form to the county clerk for official registration.

Source (confirmed on: 2016-03-22)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.047 (state website) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.047 (Justia 2014 website) [link]

Same-Day Registration

Can voters register and vote on the same day (i.e., does the state offer same-day registration)?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Register to Vote, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Voters Who Have Moved or Changed Their Name

Can people vote if they moved, but did not update their voter registration with their new address?

If a person has not updated their registration, whether and where a person may vote depends on 1) whether the voter moved before or after the registration deadline, and 2) whether the voter moved within a county or to a new county.

The last day to register is 29 days before the election. Any registered voter moves to a different county before the deadline and does not register to vote in the new county before the deadline is not eligible to vote in the present election.

Registered voters who move to a different county after the deadline are permitted to vote at the correct/assigned precinct for his or her former residence in the current election and should update their voter registrations afterwards.

When a registered voter moves from one precinct to another within the same county before the registration deadline and does not update his registration with the county clerk before the deadline, the voter must be allowed to update the voting records and vote in the current election at the correct/assigned precinct for the current address after confirming his current address and signing the precinct list. Before being allowed to vote, the voter must also confirm his identity and fill out the affidavit for voters whose right to vote has been challenged.

When a registered voter moves from one precinct to another precinct within the same county after the registration deadline, the voter must be allowed to vote in the current election at the correct/assigned precinct for the current address upon affirmation of his current address and signing the precinct list. Before being allowed to vote, the voter must confirm his identity and fill out the affidavit for voters whose right to vote is challenged.

When a registered voter moves to a different state after the new state’s voter registration deadline for a presidential election, the person must be allowed to cast an absentee ballot for President and Vice President only in Kentucky, by mail or at the county clerk's office of the former residence or other place designated by the county board of elections and approved by the State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.025 [link]

Can people vote if they have changed their name, but did not update their voter registration with their new name?

A voter who has changed their name may indicate the change at the precinct on Election Day by completing the form provided for this purpose by the State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-15)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 116.085 [link]

Language, Literacy, and Disability Access

Language and Literacy Access

Does the state have any places that must provide election materials in languages other than English, per Section 203 of the Voting Rights Act of 1965?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-07)

Voting Rights Act Amendments of 2006, Determinations Under Section 203, 76 Fed. Reg. 63602 (Oct. 13, 2011) [link]

Does the state have any other rules about providing election materials in languages other than English?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.255 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.255 [link]

Who can help a voter with reading assistance or translation if they can't vote on their own?

Under Section 208 of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, any voter who needs help when voting because of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write may be helped by a person of the voter's choice, other than the voter's employer, an agent of that employer, or an officer or agent of the voter's union.

Additionally, under Kentucky law, a voter who is unable to read English may receive help at the polls. To receive assistance, the voter must sign on oath stating that the voter requires voting assistance because of inability to read English. The oath must be made on the Voter Assistance Form approved by the State Board of Elections. Any person helping a voter must complete the Voter Assistance Form.

After signing the oath, two poll workers, or another person chosen by the voter, can operate the voting machine or complete the ballot as the voter directs. An assistant cannot be the voter's employer, an agent of that employer, or an agent or officer of the voter's union.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.255(2), 117.255(3) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.255(2), 117.255(3) [link]

52 U.S.C. § 10508 (federal law) [link]

Disability Access

Who can help a voter with a disability if they can't vote on their own?

Under Section 208 of the federal Voting Rights Act of 1965, any voter who needs help when voting because of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write may be helped by a person of the voter's choice, other than the voter's employer, an agent of that employer, or an officer or agent of the voter's union.

Additionally, under Kentucky law, voters with disabilities can receive assistance at the polls or receive assistance for absentee mail voting.

To receive assistance at the polls, the voter must signs an oath stating that the voter is unable to vote without assistance because of blindness, other physical disability, or an inability to read English. The oath must be on the Voter Assistance Form approved by the State Board of Elections. Any person helping the voter must complete the Voter Assistance Form.

After signing the oath, two poll workers, or another person chosen by the voter, can operate the voting machine or complete the ballot as the voter directs. An assistant cannot be the voter's employer, an agent of that employer, or an agent or officer of the voter's union.

Voters can receive help because of blindness or other physical disability for a particular election or for all elections on a permanent basis. Voters who want help for all elections may apply to the county board of elections for certification. The certification application may be made when registering to vote or completing the Voter Assistance Form by indicating that the reason for obtaining assistance is permanent. The county board of elections will determine whether the applicant requires assistance on a permanent basis and notify the county clerk. Then, the State Board of Elections must indicate on the precinct voter roster those voters who are certified to receive assistance permanently without signing the Voter Assistance Form at the precinct.

Finally, voters with disabilities may receive help with voting absentee by mail. Except for those voters who have been certified as requiring permanent voting assistance, any person voting by using an absentee ballot (by mail or in person) who receives help voting, and any person who provides the help, is required to complete the Voter Assistance Form.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

52 U.S.C. § 10508 (federal law) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.255(2), 117.255(3) (assistance in particular election), Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.255(5) (permanent assistance) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.255(2), 117.255(3) (assistance in particular election), Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.255(5) (permanent assistance) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.0863 (absentee by mail assistance) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.0863 (absentee by mail assistance) [link]

Does the state have other rules related to access for persons with disabilities?

Yes. In Kentucky, if a court decides someone is “insane”, that person cannot vote. If a court decides that a person needs a legal guardian or conservator, or if a person is a ward, that person loses the right to vote only if the court decides that the person cannot vote.

Although voters typically may not occupy a voting machine for more than two minutes if other voters are waiting to use it, voters who need extra time to cast a ballot because of a disability must be given a reasonable amount of time to vote.

Additionally, disability is an excuse that allows a person to cast an absentee ballot. Any qualified voter who has not been declared mentally disabled by court, and who, because of age, disability, or illness, is not able to go to the polls on election day may vote in the following manner.

At least 7 days before the date of the election and before the close of normal business hours, the voter must present to the county clerk, by mail or in person, a completed application for an absentee ballot containing a verified statement that the voter’s inability to go to the polls is due to age, disability, or illness. The request for the application may be made by telephone, facsimile machine, mail, or in person. Within 3 days of receipt of the request, the clerk must mail to the voter an absentee ballot and envelopes, which the voter may use to cast their vote. (link to what needs to be in a completed request for application?)

Finally, counties may choose to participate in a pilot program for unassisted voting by persons with blindness or visually impairment. In these counties, voting equipment is used to allow such persons to vote without assistance, such as audio ballots. Contact your county clerk to learn whether your county is participating in this program.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-31)

Ky. Const. § 145(3) (insanity) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 387.580(3)(c) (guardianship or conservatorship) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 387.580(3)(c) (guardianship or conservatorship) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 387.590(10) (wards) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 387.590(10) (wards) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.255(7) (time at voting machine) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.255(7) (time at voting machine) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.075 (absentee ballot) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.075 (absentee ballot) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.088 (pilot program) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.088 (pilot program) [link]

Early Voting, Absentee Voting, and Other Ways to Vote

Vote-by-Mail

Does the state provide mail ballots to all voters without a request?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Absentee Voter Information, Ky. Bd. Of Elections [link]

Early Voting/Absentee In-Person Voting

Does the state have early voting/absentee in-person voting?

Only in-person absentee voting is available, and only voters who fall into one of the excuse categories listed below may vote in-person absentee:

  • Persons who will be out of their county on Election Day
  • Members of the armed forces and their dependents
  • Kentucky voters living overseas
  • Military personnel confined to base and learn of confinement within seven days or less of an election and are not eligible for a paper absentee ballot
  • Residents (including but not limited to students) temporarily residing outside of their county
  • Voters with surgery scheduled on Election Day and their spouses.
  • Pregnant women in the last trimester of pregnancy, and who swear an oath that they are in their last trimester of pregnancy;
  • Certain elections workers.
Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

Where does early voting/absentee in-person voting take place?

At the county clerk's office or another site chosen by the county board of elections and approved by the State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

When does early voting/absentee in-person voting take place?

At least the 12 working days before the election, but county boards of elections can choose to extend the period.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

What official chooses early voting/absentee in-person voting locations?

The county board of elections, and they must be approved by the State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085 [link]

Are lists of early voters/absentee in-person voters published? How?

Under Kentucky law, the county clerks must keep a list of absentee voters, but there is no requirement that the list be published. However, this list may be requested as a public record under the Kentucky Open Records Act after the close of business hours on the Election Day for which the list applies.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.086 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.086 [link]

Absentee Voting by Mail

Can anyone vote absentee by mail without an excuse? If not, what excuses allow a voter to vote absentee by mail?

No, and note that some voters with excuses must vote absentee in person rather than by mail. The following voters can vote absentee by mail:

  • Voters who cannot vote in person due to disability, illness, or age
  • Members of the armed forces and their spouses and dependents
  • Kentucky voters living overseas
  • Students temporarily living outside of their county of residence
  • Incarcerated voters who have charged but not been convicted of a crime
  • Voters living temporarily outside of Kentucky but who remain eligible to vote in Kentucky elections
  • Voters who cannot vote on Election Day or any day that in-person absentee voting is available because their job location requires them to be absent from their county of residence all hours and all days that in-person absentee voting is conducted
  • Voters who are program participants in the Secretary of State's crime victim address confidentiality protection program
  • Voters who have moved out of state after the voter registration deadline in their new state has passed. These voters may vote absentee by mail only for President and Vice President

Note that there are different requirements for voting absentee in-person. See the above section on “Early Voting/Absentee In-Person Voting.”

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-26)

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.085(1)(a), 117.085(1)(e) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.085(1)(a), 117.085(1)(e) [link]

Deadline to apply for absentee ballot by mail

The application for a mail-in absentee ballot must be received by the close of business 7 days before an election.

An exception applies to voters and their spouses who have a medical emergency within 14 days of an election, whose applications must be received within the 14-day period preceding the election.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-26)

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.085(1)(a), 117.085(1)(b) (generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 (medical emergencies) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.085(1)(a), 117.085(1)(b) (generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 (medical emergencies) [link]

How does a voter apply for an absentee mail ballot?

Voters must first request an application for an absentee ballot from their county clerk. This request can be made by phone, e-mail, mail, fax, or in person. Then, the voter must fill out the absentee ballot application and return it by mail or in person.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Absentee Voter Information, Ky. State Bd. Of Elections [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1) [link]

Can a voter make an online request for an absentee mail ballot?

Generally no, voters must either mail or hand-deliver their absentee ballot applications to their county clerk.

A limited exception applies to military and overseas voters, who may request a federal post-card ballot using the electronic transmission system developed by the Secretary of State for such voters.

Note that voters may make an online request for an absentee ballot application by e-mailing their county clerk.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-26)

Absentee Voter Information, Ky. State Bd. Of Elections, (general rule and application e-mail request) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.085(1)(b) (exception for military and overseas voters), 117.085(1) (application e-mail request) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. §§ 117.085(1)(b) (exception for military and overseas voters), 117.085(1) (application e-mail request) [link]

Does a voter need to submit any supporting documentation or verification with an absentee mail ballot or absentee mail ballot application? If so, what is required?

Yes. The absentee ballot application form received from the county clerk must state, the following information about the applicant: name, residential address, precinct, party affiliation, statement of the reason the person cannot vote in person on Election Day, statement of where the voter will be on Election Day, statement of compliance with residency requirements for voting in the precinct, and the voter's mailing address for an absentee ballot. The application must be reviewed and signed by the voter.

Furthermore, voters who are unable to appear at the polls on Election Day because of age, disability, or illness must include on their absentee ballot application a verified statement that their inability to appear is due to age, disability, or illness.

For medical emergencies within 14 days or less of an election, a registered voter and the registered voter's spouse may apply for an absentee ballot. The application must state that the emergency condition occurred within the 14- day period, and it must be notarized. The application must be notarized.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-26)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(2) (generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.075 (disability, illness, or age) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 (medical emergencies) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(2) (generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.075 (disability, illness, or age) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 (medical emergencies) [link]

Are there restrictions on who may request or turn in an absentee mail ballot application for a voter?

Yes. Generally, an absentee ballot application may be requested only by the voter or the spouse, parents, or children of the voter.

If the voter or their spouse is voting absentee by mail due to the voter’s medical emergency, the application may be requested by the voter or their spouse, parents or children. If the voter has no spouse, parents, or children, the application form may be requested by and delivered by the brother, sister, niece, nephew, or other designee of the voter.

The application may be returned by mail or in person at the county clerk’s office, but only the voter may return to the application in person. A limited exception applies to voters who experience a medical emergency (see below).

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1) (requests generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1) (requests generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 (medical emergency requests) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 (medical emergency requests) [link]

Absentee Voter Information, Ky. State Bd. of Elections, (requests generally and in-person application return) [link]

Deadline to return absentee ballots

To be counted, the absentee ballot must be received in the county clerk’s office by the time the polls close on Election Day.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Absentee Voter Information, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.086(1) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.086(1) [link]

Are there any special emergency rules that allow a voter to vote absentee by mail if they are unable to make it to the polls at the last minute?

Yes. If a medical emergency occurs within 14 days of the election, a registered voter and their spouse may apply for an absentee ballot. The application must state that the emergency condition occurred within the 14-day period and it must be notarized. The application may be requested by and delivered by the voter or their spouse, parents or children. If the voter has no spouse, parents, or children, the application form may be requested by and delivered by the brother, sister, niece, nephew, or other designee of the voter. Upon receipt of the application and verification, the county clerk must issue an absentee ballot.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.077 [link]

Are lists of people who vote absentee by mail published? How?

Under Kentucky law, the county clerks must keep a list of absentee voters, but there is no requirement that the list be published. However, this list may be requested as a public record under the Kentucky Open Records Act after the close of business hours on the Election Day for which the list applies.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.086 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.086 [link]

Presidential-only ballots

Under federal law, any registered voter who moves out of the state after the 30th day before a Presidential election may vote for President and Vice President either in person at the voter’s previous state of residence or using an absentee ballot from the voter’s previous state of residence.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-09-12)

52 U.S.C. § 10502(e) [link]

Absentee Voting for Military and Overseas Voters

Who is eligible for military/overseas absentee voting?

The following people are eligible to vote a military-overseas absentee ballot:

  • A uniformed-service voter or overseas voter who is registered to vote in Kentucky or whose voting residence is in Kentucky.
  • A “uniform-service voter” is any qualified voter, and their spouse and dependents, who is a member of active or reserve components of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard who is on active duty; a member of the Merchant Marine; the commissioned corps of the Public Health Service; or a member on activated status of the National Guard or state militia.
  • An “overseas voter” is any United Citizens citizen who is outside the United States. (Spouses and dependents are not included.)
  • An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, was last eligible to vote in Kentucky (or would have been had the voter been of voting age) and, except for absence from the state, otherwise satisfies Kentucky’s voter eligibility requirements
  • An overseas voter who was born outside of the United States and, except for absence from the state, otherwise satisfies Kentucky’s voter eligibility requirements, if (1) the last place where a parent or legal guardian of the voter was, or would have been, eligible to vote before leaving the United States was in Kentucky, and (2) the voter has not previously registered to vote in any other state.
Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1)(a)(2.) (generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1)(a)(2.) (generally) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.010(1) (definitions) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.010(1) (definitions) [link]

How do voters apply for a military/overseas ballot?

Military/overseas voters may apply for an absentee ballot by means of the Federal Post-card Application, which may be transmitted to the county clerk's office by mail, by facsimile machine, or by means of the electronic transmission system established by the Secretary of State.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1)(b) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1)(b) [link]

Deadline to apply for a military/overseas ballot

The application must be received by close of business 7 days before an election.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1)(a) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.085(1)(a) [link]

Deadline to return the military/overseas ballot

To be counted, a military-overseas absentee ballot must be received in the county clerk’s office by the close of the polls on Election Day. The ballot may not be rejected on the basis that it has a late postmark, an unreadable postmark, or no postmark.

If a military/overseas voter wishes to register to vote at the same time as casting a military-overseas ballot by using the declaration that accompanies the ballot, the declaration must be received by the voter registration deadline.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.090(1) (general deadline) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.090(1) (general deadline) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.050 (deadline for simultaneous voter registration) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.050 (deadline for simultaneous voter registration) [link]

Absentee Voter Information, Ky. State Bd. of Elections, (general deadline) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.110 (military-overseas deadline and postmark) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.110 (military-overseas deadline and postmark) [link]

Who is eligible to use a write-in absentee ballot? How does it work?

Any military or overseas voter who applied for an absentee ballot on time but did not receive it may vote using a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot, which will allow the voter to vote only for candidates for federal offices.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.100 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117A.100 [link]

52 U.S.C. § 20303 [link]

On Election Day

Where do you vote in person?

Where do you vote in person?

Voters cast ballots in the voting place for their precinct. Each county board of elections must, not later than September 20 of each year, establish the voting place for each precinct. If a change becomes necessary after that date, notice of the change must be published. If a change becomes necessary on Election Day, notice signs must be posted at the former voting place.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.065 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.065 [link]

What hours are the polls open on Election Day?

What hours are the polls open on Election Day?

6am - 6pm. Voters in line at 6pm must be allowed to vote.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

2015 Kentucky Election Calendar, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 118.035 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 118.035 [link]

In the Voting Booth

Are there rules about what materials a voter can and cannot bring into the voting booth?

Voters may not display signs or distribute campaign literature, cards, or handbills in the building where voting takes place.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-27)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 4:180E (emergency regulation) [link]

Can a voter bring children into the voting booth with them?

Yes, if they are minors. A child may also qualify as an assistant, see below.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.235 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.235 [link]

Are employers required to give employees time off to vote?

Are employers required to give employees time off to vote?

Yes. Employers must allow employees at least four hours off of work to vote on Election Day or during early voting if the person has asked for leave before the day the person appears to vote or request an absentee ballot. However, the employer may specify the times between which the employee may leave work to vote. The employee cannot be penalized for taking this time to vote, unless the person does not actually vote and does not have a valid reason why the person was prevented from voting.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Const. § 148 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 118.035 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 118.035 [link]

Campaigning, Electioneering, and Recording Devices

Are there restrictions on campaigning/electioneering during early voting/absentee in-person voting?

Yes. No person may display signs, distribute campaign literature, cards, or handbills, solicit signatures to any petition, or solicit votes for or against any bona fide candidate or ballot question in a manner that expressly advocates the election or defeat of the candidate or expressly advocates the passage or defeat of the ballot question within the interior of a building, nor affix any of these things to the exterior or interior of a building, if either (1) the building is where the county clerk's office is located, or (2) the building has been designated by the county board of elections and approved by the State Board of Elections for absentee in-person voting, during the hours absentee in-person voting is being conducted in the building.

Additionally, on the day of any election, no person may display signs, distribute campaign literature, cards, or handbills, solicit signatures to any petition, or solicit votes for or against any bona fide candidate or ballot question in a manner that expressly advocates the election or defeat of the candidate or expressly advocates the passage or defeat of the ballot question within 100 feet of any entrance to the building in which a voting machine is located if that entrance is unlocked and is used by voters during the hours voting is being conducted in the building. A limited exception applies which allows bumper stickers to be affixed to a person's vehicle while parked within or passing through a distance of 100 feet of any entrance to the building in which a voting machine is located.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 4:180E (emergency regulation) [link]

Are there restrictions on campaigning/electioneering on Election Day?

Yes. On the day of any election, no person may display signs, distribute campaign literature, cards, or handbills, solicit signatures to any petition, or solicit votes for or against any bona fide candidate or ballot question in a manner that expressly advocates the election or defeat of the candidate or expressly advocates the passage or defeat of the ballot question within 100 feet of any entrance to the building in which a voting machine is located if that entrance is unlocked and is used by voters during the hours voting is being conducted in the building.

A limited exception applies which allows bumper stickers to be affixed to a person's vehicle while parked within or passing through a distance of 100 feet of any entrance to the building in which a voting machine is located.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 4:180E (emergency regulation) [link]

Can a voter wear a button or t-shirt with a candidate's name or logo on it into the polling place when they vote?

No. Buttons and clothing that advocate the election or defeat of a candidate are prohibited.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 4:180E (emergency regulation) [link]

*NEW 1** Can a voter use a digital or recording device (such as a cell phone or camera) inside the polling place or voting booth?

No, but voters may have cell phone in their possession.

Source (confirmed on: 10/14/2016)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.236 [link]

Ka. Precinct Officer's Guide [link]

*NEW 2** Can a voter use a digital or recording device (such as a cell phone or camera) outside the polling place but within the zone around the polling place where campaigning/electioneering is banned?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 10/8/2016)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.236 [link]

Video Your Vote for YouTube? Not in Kentucky [link]

Who's at the Polls?

Can persons other than election workers observe inside the polls?

Yes. For primary elections, regular elections, and special elections, each political party is entitled to have up to two (2) challengers at each precinct during the holding of the election. Additionally, any school board candidate, any independent ticket or candidate for city office, any nonpartisan city candidate, or candidate for an office of the Court of Justice at the primary or regular election may designate not more than one (1) challenger to be present at and witness the holding of primaries or elections in each precinct in the county. Finally, for each constitutional amendment or public question on the ballot, the county board of elections may allow committees to appoint challengers. While at the precinct, the challengers are entitled to stay in the room or at the door.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.315 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.315 [link]

What are observers inside the polls called in the state?

Challengers.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.315 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.315 [link]

Does the state establish requirements to observe inside the polls?

Yes. For primary elections, each political party is entitled to have up to two (2) challengers at each precinct during the holding of a primary election. Any group of bona fide candidates of the same political party equal to 25% of all the candidates for that party to be voted for in a county in any primary, may recommend to the county committee or governing authority of the party for the county a list of persons whom they desire to have appointed as challengers in each precinct in the county. If more than two (2) such lists are furnished, the committee or governing authority, in making appointments of challengers, must alternate between the several lists so furnished so as to give to each list an equal amount or proportion of the appointments, but in no event may there be appointed more than one (1) challenger for any precinct from any one (1) list. The list of challengers must be presented to the chair or secretary of the party committee of the county on or before the third Friday in April preceding the primary, and the committee or the chairman thereof must make the appointments, certify to same, and present a list of certified challengers to the county clerk at least twenty (20) days before the date on which the primary is held. The appointment of challengers must be certified in all respects as challengers at regular elections, except as otherwise provided in this section. The challengers must be registered voters of the county in which the primary is held and will be subject to the same penalties and possess the same rights and privileges as challengers at regular elections, except that the challengers of one political party are not be entitled to challenge persons who offer to vote for candidates of any other party in the primary.

For regular elections and special elections, the county executive committee of any political party having a ticket to elect in the election may designate not more than two (2) challengers to be present at and witness the holding of the election in each precinct in the county. The challengers must be registered voters of the county in which the election is held, must be appointed in writing signed by the chair of the committee, and must produce written appointments on demand of any election officer. The committee or chair must present the county clerk with a list of designated challengers at least twenty (20) days preceding a regular election and at least fifteen (15) days preceding a special election.

Additionally, any school board candidate, any independent ticket or candidate for city office, any nonpartisan city candidate, or candidate for an office of the Court of Justice at the primary or regular election may designate not more than one (1) challenger to be present at and witness the holding of primaries or elections in each precinct in the county. A candidate who designates a challenger must present the county clerk with the name of the challenger at least twenty (20) days preceding the primary or regular election. The challenger must be a registered voter of the county in which the primary or election is held, must be appointed in writing by the chair of the committee, independent candidate, or candidates representing a ticket, and must produce written appointment on demand of any election officer.

For committees supporting ballot questions: not later than the fourth Tuesday preceding an election at which constitutional amendments or other public questions are to be submitted to the vote of the people, any committee that in good faith advocates or opposes an amendment or public question may file a petition with the county clerk asking that the petitioners be recognized as the committee entitled to nominate challengers to serve at the election at which the constitutional amendment or public question is to be voted on. If more than one (1) committee alleging itself to advocate or oppose the same amendment file such a petition, the county board of elections must decide, and announce by certified mail, return receipt requested, to each committee not less than the third Tuesday preceding the election, which committee is entitled to nominate the challengers. The decision will not be final, but any aggrieved party may institute proceedings with the county judge/executive and, upon hearing, the county judge/executive shall determine which of the committees shall be recognized as the one to select challengers at the election. The committee shall file the names of the persons nominated by it with the clerk of the county at least twenty (20) days before the primary and regular elections and not less that fifteen (15) days preceding the date of a special election. The county board of elections shall, not later than the Thursday preceding the election, certify the nominees of the committee for the respective precincts to serve as challengers at the election where any constitutional amendment or public question is to be voted upon. If more than one (1) amendment or question is to be voted upon, the county board of elections may designate, on the petition of the committee, one (1) person for each amendment and question to serve as challenger at the election.

Finally, challengers must complete a training requirement. Each county board of elections must provide special training before each primary and regular election, and any special election held during a year in which no elections are scheduled, to all challengers regarding their duties and the penalties for failure to perform. Challengers must attend the training session, unless excused by the county board of elections for reason of illness or other emergency. Any person who fails to attend a training session without being excused will be prohibited from serving as a challenger or election officer for a period of five (5) years.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.315 (appointment requirements) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.315 (appointment requirements) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.187 (training requirements) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.187 (training requirements) [link]

*NEW 3* Can a poll observer use a digital or recording device (such as a cell phone or camera) in the polling place?

State law prohibits using an electronic device to create a checkoff list or record the identity of voters, but is silent on photos or recordings that do not capture voters or where voters cannot be identified. Local practices may vary.

Source (confirmed on: 10/9/2016)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.236 [link]

Video Your Vote for YouTube? Not in Kentucky [link]

Are there other rules on what poll observers can or cannot do?

Yes. Challengers have the duty of challenging the eligibility of a voter who presents himself at the precinct to vote, but who the challenger has reason to believe (1) is not a registered voter in the precinct, (2) is not a resident of the precinct, (3) is a convicted felon who has not had their civil rights restored, or (4) is not the person they claim to be. To attempt to challenge a voter’s eligibility, the challenger must express his challenge to the precinct election officer, sign the oath of voter executed by the voter if the voter's name appears on the precinct roster, and state the reason for the challenge.

Challengers are prohibited from (1) campaigning or electioneering on behalf of any candidate, issue, or political party; (2) handling official election materials; attempting to intimidate or harass, verbally or otherwise, any voter who is being challenged or any precinct election officer; (4) behaving in any manner to disrupt activities at the polling place; or (5) attempting to interfere with the proper conduct of the election. Precinct election officers must warn a challenger who violates any these rules, and if the challenger continues to violate these rules after being warned, the precinct election officer must order the challenger out of the polling place. Any challenger ordered from the polling place will be prohibited from acting as a challenger in any precinct in any election for a period of five (5) years.

Challengers may tally voters or create a check-off list of voters who appear in the voting room. They are permitted to use cell phones, paper, computers, a personal telecommunications device, and other information technology systems to help them record the identities of voters in the room.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.316 (duties) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.316 (duties) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.317 (prohibitions) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.317 (prohibitions) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat.§ 117.318 (warning and ordering off) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat.§ 117.318 (warning and ordering off) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.236 (tallying and technology) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.236 (tallying and technology) [link]

Provisional Voting and Voters at the Wrong Polling Place

When should a voter be offered a provisional ballot?

Under Section 203 of the federal Help America Vote Act of 2002, if a person claims to be a registered voter in the jurisdiction in which the person desires to vote and the person claims to be eligible to vote in a federal election, but the person’s name does not appear on the official list of eligible voters for the polling place or an election official asserts that the person is not eligible to vote, then that person must be allowed to cast a provisional ballot at that polling place. The person may cast the provisional ballot after completing, in front of an election official at the polling place, a written affirmation stating that the person is (1) a registered voter in the jurisdiction, and (2) eligible to vote in that election.

Additionally, any person who votes in a federal election as a result of a federal or state court order, or any other order extending the time established for closing the polls by a state law in effect 10 days before the date of that election, may only vote in that election by casting a provisional ballot. Any such ballot cast must be separated and held apart from other provisional ballots cast for different reasons.

Under Kentucky law, the following voters participating in a federal election are given a provisional ballot:

  • A voter whose name does not appear on the precinct roster and whose registration status cannot be determined by the precinct officer;
  • A voter whose name does not appear on the precinct roster and who has been verified as ineligible to vote;
  • A voter who does not have identification;
  • A voter who is voting as a result of a federal or state court order or any order under state law in effect ten days prior to election day which extends polling hours; or
  • A voter who has been challenged by all four precinct election officers.
Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 6:020 [link]

52 U.S.C. § 21082 (federal law) [link]

Voter Rights and Responsibility, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Finding out if a provisional ballot was counted

A voter may contact their county clerk’s office to determine whether the provisional ballot was counted, and if it was not counted, the reason why it was not counted.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 6:020 [link]

Ballot Shortages/Voting Machine Malfunctions

What is the law or procedure on emergency ballots if a polling place runs out of printed ballots? Are handwritten/photocopied ballots allowed?

The county clerk must provide a sufficient number of paper absentee ballots “for voting in an emergency situation.”

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.145(2) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.145(2) [link]

What is the law or procedure on emergency ballots if a voting machine breaks or malfunctions?

If an emergency should arise due to the malfunction of the voting machine, the county clerk must provide a backup voting machine or supplemental paper ballots for use at the precinct and a ballot box in which to deposit the voted ballots.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.215(2) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.215(2) [link]

Pamela Smith, Michelle Mulder & Susannah Goodman, Counting Votes 2012: A State By State Look at Voting Technology Preparedness 50 (CountingVotes.org Aug. 2012) [link]

Voter ID and Challenges

Voter ID

Who must show ID to vote?

All voters must show ID before voting a regular ballot. Voters without ID may vote a provisional ballot.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. 6:020 [link]

Are there any special requirements for first-time voters?

No

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-28)

See Ky. Rev. Stat. §116.045 [link]

See Ky. Rev. Stat. §116.045 [link]

What ID is acceptable?

Kentucky law requires that a poll worker personally know the voter or the voter shows an acceptable document. Acceptable documents include a motor vehicle driver’s license, Social Security card, credit card, or any identification card that bears both the picture and signature of the voter, or any identification card that has been issued by the county, and which has been approved in writing by the State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. 4:010 [link]

Is a student ID an acceptable form of identification?

Yes, as long as it includes the voter's picture and signature, or is an identification card issued by the county that has been approved in writing by the State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. 4:010 [link]

Does the address on the ID have to match the address at which the voter is registered?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

See Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

See Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

See 31 Ky. Admin. Regs. 4:010 [link]

If a voter has no ID, are there alternatives such as an oath or witness?

If the poll worker personally knows the voter, they do not need to show an ID document.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. 4:010 [link]

Do elections without federal offices on the ballot (such as off-year gubernatorial elections) have different ID requirements?

No, the same voter ID requirements apply to all elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.227 [link]

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. 4:010 [link]

Challenges to Voters at the Polling Place

Who can challenge a voter at the polling place?

A certified challenger or a poll worker.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.245 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.245 [link]

What are the allowed reasons on which a voter can be challenged at the polling place?

  • The voter is not registered to vote
  • The voter is not a resident of that precinct
  • The voter is a convicted felon whose rights have not been restored
  • The person is not the voter they are claiming to be
Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.316 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.316 [link]

Is there a requirement for the challenger to provide cause or evidence?

No. The challenger must only have "reason to believe" the voter is ineligible for one of the approved reasons.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.316 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.316 [link]

How does a voter defend their eligibility to vote if they are challenged?

A voter can sign a written oath affirming their qualifications to vote.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.245 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.245 [link]

What are the restrictions on polling place challenges?

Polling place challenges are permitted. If the challenger attempts to challenge a person's right to vote, he shall express his challenge to the precinct election officer, sign the oath of voter executed by the voter if the voter's name appears on the precinct roster, and state the reason for his challenge. A challenger may not (1) electioneer or campaign on behalf of any candidate, issue, or political party; (2) handle official election; (3) attempt to intimidate or harass, verbally or otherwise, any voter who is being challenged or any precinct election officer; (4) behave in any manner to disrupt activities at the polling place; or (5) attempt to interfere with the proper conduct of the election.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.245 (procedure) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.245 (procedure) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.316 (challenger prohibitions) [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.316 (challenger prohibitions) [link]

State and Local Election Officials

The State Election Authority

Who/what is the state election authority?

The Secretary of State and State Board of Elections (an independent body chaired by the Secretary of State).

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Office of Elections, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Current official

Alison Lundergan Grimes, Secretary of State.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Office of Elections, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

E-mail

Secretary of State E-mail Form

Link to email address directory for State Board of Elections: http://elect.ky.gov/Pages/contactus.aspx

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Elections Contact Form, Ky. Sec. of State [link]

Phone

Secretary of State: (502) 564-3490 State Board of Elections: 502-573-7100

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Office of Elections, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Contact Us, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Address

Office of the Secretary of State

Office of Elections

700 Capital Avenue, Suite 148

Frankfort, KY 40601

State Board of Elections

140 Walnut Street

Frankfort, Kentucky 40601

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Office of Elections, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Contact Us, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Local Election Authorities

What local election official(s) are in charge of major state-level elections (such as the even-year November general elections)?

County Clerk.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.035 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.035 [link]

What is the county-level election official?

County Clerk and the County Board of Elections (an independent body chaired by the County Clerk).

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-18)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.035 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.035 [link]

What is the municipal-level election official?

None - election duties are handled at the county level.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.035 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.035 [link]

Ky. Const. § 167 [link]

Contact information for local election authorities

http://elect.ky.gov/contactcountyclerks/Pages/default.aspx

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Contact County Clerks, Ky. Sec. of State [link]

The Voter File

Voter File Basics

National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) Disclosure Law

Section 8 of the federal NVRA requires that each State maintain for at least 2 years and make available for public inspection and, where available, photocopying at a reasonable cost, all records concerning the implementation of programs and activities conducted for the purpose of ensuring the accuracy and currency of official lists of eligible voters, except to the extent that such records contain information about a person declining to register to vote or information about the identity of a voter registration agency through which a particular voter might have chosen to register.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

52 U.S.C. § 20507 [link]

Acquiring a Voter File

Under state procedure, who may acquire a voter file?

The State Board of Elections must provide any and all precinct lists to duly qualified candidates, political party committees or officials thereof, or any committee that advocates or opposes an amendment or public question. The State Board of Elections may also furnish the precinct lists to other persons at the board's discretion.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.025 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.025 [link]

Who is the state-level contact for acquiring a voter file?

Kentucky State Board of Elections.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Request Voter Registration Data, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

How much does the state charge for the file?

The state charges $450 for the statewide voter registration list.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 3:010 [link]

What format is the file available in?

The data is formatted into a American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII) text file. This general text format requires the requester to import the data into a variety of software packages.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Request Voter Registration Data, Ky. State Bd. of Elections [link]

Use of the Voter File

Does the state have restrictions on commercial use of the voter file?

Yes; the voter file cannot be given to persons who intend to use it for commercial use or transfer it to persons who intend to use it for commercial use. “Commercial use” means use for profit, the solicitation of donations, or for the sale or advertisement of any good or service.

Exceptions to this rule allow persons to use the voter file (1) for scholarly, journalistic, political (including political fundraising), or governmental purposes; (2) for publication, broadcast, or related use by a newspaper, magazine, radio station, television station, or other news medium in its news or other publications or broadcasts; or (3) in a publication provided or sold to duly qualified candidates; political party committees, or officials thereof; or any committee that advocates or opposes an amendment or public question.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.025 [link]

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.025 [link]

31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 3:010 [link]

Does the state have restrictions on non-commercial use of the voter file?

No.

Source (confirmed on: 2015-08-29)

See Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.025 [link]

See Ky. Rev. Stat. § 117.025 [link]

See 31 Ky. Admin. Regs. § 3:010 [link]