Voters will head to the polls in four weeks. Among other state races, voters will chose between candidates for all seats in the Virginia House to Delegates.
In the Valley, there is just one race where both candidates are newcomers. Current Republican Del. Chris Saxman announced this summer he would not seek re-election.
The 20th House district pits Democrat Erik Curren against Republican Richard "Dickie" Bell. The district includes Staunton, Highland County, and parts of Rockingham and Augusta counties.
Both men were in the WHSV studios Tuesday night for their first televised debate. Curren and Bell pitched their plans to maintain Virginia's roads while facing dwindling dollars.
"Let's put the trucks on trains. That will only cost nine billion [dollars]. It'll save the taxpayers four billion dollars, which is money we can invest in other transportation projects. Now, that's probably not going to be enough to fund all the transportation fixes that we need," says Curren.
"I think rail can be a part of the solution. I don't think it's the total solution. I don't think it solves a lot of the problems that exist with transportation. In rural areas like ours, we need roads. We're going to have to make road improvements," says Bell.
Richmond legislators have been in gridlock for years over how to do fix the commonwealth's transportation troubles.
Bell says he won't support new taxes. He's looking at potential money from off-shore drilling.
"I also think tolls may be part of the solution. I worry about the equity of tolls. I don't want us to pay tolls in this part of the state that go to improvements in Northern Virginia or the Tidewater area," says Bell.
Curren pushes for what he calls modernizing the income tax bracket. He wants it to keep up with inflation.
"If we don't solve our transportation problems, Virginia's status as the number one state to do business is really in peril," says Curren.
Curren and Bell both called for the closed rest areas to be reopened as soon as possible.