The new year has just begun, but time is running out for Pueblo’s two remaining mayoral candidates. Ballots went in the mail this week and the election is less than three weeks away.

And yet it’s been an unusually low-key runoff election between Nick Gradisar and Steve Nawrocki. Perhaps they thought it would be unseemly to do much campaigning during the holiday season. But now the holidays are over and Puebloans are going to have to make a decision soon.

In the general election, we endorsed Chris Nicoll because he had some very specific ideas for how to move the city forward and we thought he had the vision and energy to bring them to fruition. So far, what we’ve heard from Nawrocki and Gradisar has been pretty generic.

We’re hoping that will start to change this week, when the two men meet in a series of debates. The schedule for those is as follows:

Tomorrow at 7 p.m., the League of Women Voters and Pueblo Pulp are sponsoring a debate at the Pueblo Community College Fortino Ballroom. KOAA will be live streaming that debate on its web site.

Friday at 4 p.m., KKTV will broadcast its debate live.

Friday at 7 p.m., The Pueblo Chieftain will hold our debate at the Occhiato University Center on the campus of Colorado State University-Pueblo.

On Jan. 5 at 1:30 p.m., a group of community organizations will host a debate in the Ryals Room of the Robert Hoag Rawlings Public Library.

On Jan. 7 at 7 p.m., the Latino Democratic Forum Debate will be held at a location to be determined.

We encourage citizens to attend at least one of these forums in person or watch them on television or over the internet. And we encourage the candidates to tell us more specifically how they would propose to govern this city.

It’s easy to say you’re for better roads, less crime and more jobs. It’s more difficult to talk about ways to actually accomplish those things.

We’re not assuming Gradisar and Nawrocki don’t have ideas about how to meet such goals. We think they do. They just haven’t done a very good job of explaining them so far.

And make no mistake: Pueblo will be getting a good mayor, no matter who wins the election. Both candidates are good men who have long records of service to this community.

As usual, the Chieftain editorial board will be making its endorsement recommendation soon. We want to see how the candidates perform in some of the debates before we do. At this point, we’re planning to offer our endorsement in Sunday’s newspaper.

We realize not everyone is going to agree with our endorsements, in this election or any other. But endorsements are just suggestions based on the consensus of the editorial board. We hope that some people will find them helpful in making a decision.

Most importantly, we hope that Puebloans will participate in this historic election.