Harrisonburg City Council candidates discuss local issues in virtual forum

Harrisonburg City Hall
Harrisonburg City Hall(WHSV)
Published: Oct. 22, 2020 at 2:30 AM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Harrisonburg’s five city council candidates discussed issues in the Friendly City on in a virtual Candidates Forum on Wednesday night.

The forum was hosted by United Way of Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition and the Harrisonburg-Rockingham Association of Realtors.

It included all five candidates on the Nov. 3 ballot; Laura Dent, Charles Hendricks, George Hirschmann, Kathleen Kelley and Deanna Reed.

The candidates were asked a variety of questions regarding their views and goals if elected. Candidates were asked what they think the most pressing issues that need to be addressed in the city.

“Affordable housing and the homeless crisis, with the 60 percent ALICE population, so improving both the affordable housing stock and the living wage to help people afford to live here,” Dent said.

“One of those is addressing the climate crisis. We need to build a resilient city and sustainable economy, so we need solar PV on our rooftops, which will reduce our tax burden in the long run,” Hendricks said.

“We must make sure our businesses recover and thrive again, Reed said. "We must get our children safely back in schools and ensure that families recover financially.”

“Make Harrisonburg business-friendly and competitive with the county," Kelley said. "Right now I see an exodus of our tax pays and if we lose that, we lose the ability to help each other.” “We have to reopen Harrisonburg, but we have to do it safely and continue to revitalize the downtown areas and any of the shopping areas around the city,” Hirschmann said.

To view the full Candidate Forum, click here.

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