Hburg council candidates reveal differences over priorities, ‘unpopular’ decisions and even scooters

As the five city council candidates wrapped up a wide-ranging forum Tuesday that veered from scooters and golf courses to schools and I-81, they had to answer one last doozy: What’s an unpopular decision that must be made for Harrisonburg?

The divergent answers to the final question revealed the competing philosophies and approaches of the five, who are vying in the Nov. 6 election for two spots on the council.

Changing approach to jails can save money and improve lives, residents and activists say

As a crowd gathered on the corner of High and Market Streets Monday evening, Jennifer Davis Sensenig, president of Faith in Action, urged the more than 80 people to march and make their case for local justice reform.

“We’re coming in force because we think the [CCJB] has the power to make local changes,” Sensenig said. The crowd responded with cheers.

Council candidates try to connect with JMU students

The five city council candidates tried Wednesday evening to appeal to bloc of potential voters that often eludes them—especially in midterm election years. But even the students who showed up to the Traveling Town Hall stop at JMU’s Grace Street Apartments weren’t exactly sure, at least at first, how the city council affects them.

Phillip Wong, a junior psychology major, was one of the few students to ask any questions of the council candidates: Democrats Chris Jones and Sal Romero Jr. and independents Carolyn Frank, Frank McMillan and Paloma Saucedo. The five are vying for two spots on the council.