John Tilley

LRC Public Information

State prisons are at capacity, county jails are overcrowded and the state is recommending transferring about 1,600 inmates to private prisons that have been shuttered for the past several years.

Nodar Kherkheulidze, Wikimedia Commons

Gov. Matt Bevin said he wants Kentucky to “lead the way” on criminal justice reform and has appointed a council tasked with producing legislative ideas for next year’s General Assembly.

The 23-member committee includes state officials, legislators and advocates from around the state.


Voters will head to the polls in Christian and Trigg counties Tuesday in the special election for the currently vacant 8th District Kentucky House seat. The election is one of four next week that could shift power in the Kentucky Legislature.


Major party candidates have been selected for the special election for the Kentucky House of Representatives 8th District seat vacated by new Justice and Public Safety Cabinet secretary John Tilley.

Christian County Democratic Party chair Jeff Taylor was elected unanimously Thursday as his party’s nominee by the Christian and Trigg County executive committees. Taylor will face Republican businessman Walker Thomas, a former Hopkinsville city councilman.

Author: RRZEicons, Wikimedia Commons

Local Democratic and Republican party heads are zeroing in on their candidates for the special election to replace Kentucky state Rep. John Tilley, now set for March 8.

Republican Gov. Matt Bevin appointed Tilley, a Democrat last month as secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet.

Kittugwiki, Wikimedia Commons

Four special elections in March could alter the political landscape of Kentucky state government, furthering the Republican Party’s lunge for control of the state House.

The elections on March 8 will be for four state House seats in districts surrounding Hopkinsville, South Shore, Danville and Georgetown. The seats were vacated by two Republicans and two Democrats.

LRC Public Information

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin or state House of Representatives Speaker Greg Stumbo will now have to set a special election for state Rep. John Tilley’s seat after Bevin appointed the Democratic lawmaker as secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet.

LRC Media Relations

Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin has appointed State Rep. John Tilley (D-Hopkinsville) to serve as Secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet.  

Tilley is currently serving in his fifth term in the Kentucky House of Representatives.  He is a former prosecutor and is nationally-recognized for his work on criminal justice reform and drug policy.

He is also the first Democrat appointed by the Republican Governor to a cabinet position.

LRC Public Information

After a week of mulling it over, State Representative Gerald Watkins of Paducah says he will not vie for Ed Whitfield’s 1st District congressional seat.

Whitfield announced in September he wouldn’t seek a 12th term.

Eric Molina, Wikimedia Commons

Several Kentucky legislators on Friday spoke against a provision in the House’s heroin bill that would allow local health districts to start needle exchanges—but the chamber unanimously passed the bill.