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The Kentucky Sheriff

In the South, where the county system was strong, the office of Sheriff was more important than in those areas where local government centered in towns or townships.Under the first Kentucky Constitution, the office of the Sheriff was elective and the term of office was three years. Under the second Constitution the Sheriff was nominated by the county court and appointed by the governor from the courts list of nominees. The term of office was two years (KY Const. (1799), Art. III, sec. 31) In 1850, under the third Constitution, the Sheriffs office was again made elective. The term of Office was two years ( Art. VI, sec. 4). The present Constitution requires the election of a Sheriff in each county. His term is for four years (section 99). Before taking office he must execute bond as provided in KRS 70.020, 134.230 and 134.250. The bond required by KRS70.020 relates to the performance of his tax collection duties. He must also take the constitutional oath of office (Ky. Const., sec.228) and statutory oath of office.


  • Twenty-four years of age
  •  A citizen of Kentucky
  •  A resident of the Commonwealth for two years
  •  A resident of the county in which he or she is elected one year prior of election.

Before Taking Office:

  • Execute a bond and take constitutional oath of office

Term of office:
  • Four years, may be re-elected