New House Bill Could Merge Kentucky Counties

Graphic courtesy Ralph Davis, EKB

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) –  House Bill 243,  sponsored by Republican state Rep. Toby Herald, of Beattyville, would change Kentucky’s political landscape in the most literal way.

The bill would consolidate 100 counties into 34. Larger counties, such as Fayette, Jefferson, Warren and Pike, would remain unchanged.

The counties could be renamed and local governments would consolidate.

A similar bill, HB 242 would also reduce the number of Kentucky’s county and independent school districts. Boyd County would retain its own school district despite merging with Martin and Lawrence in HB 243.


Create noncodified sections to consolidate various counties in the Commonwealth; stipulate how the county is to be divided into districts, select new county names and county seats, form taxing districts, integrate into representative, senatorial, congressional districts, or judicial circuits, require that records are transferred, treat appointed officials on boards, and the transition of the board functions, account for special districts, transfer contracts, bonds, franchises and other legal instruments to new county, transfer employees employed as of December 31, 2022, to new county, maintain local option status until changed by law, require Circuit Court clerks serve remainder of term concurrently and have duties for that period prescribed by Administrative Office of the Courts, and transition county board of election membership to coordinate with the consolidation.  LINK


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