Northern Virginians will go to the polls on Tuesday to choose among candidates for party nominations to state and local officers and to vote on proposed bond issues totaling $98.85 million.

Winners of the primaries will be candidates in the general election on Nov. 8.

The principal contest is the race between former Attorney General Andrew P. Miller and former Lt. Gov. Henry E. Howell for the Democratic nomination for governor. Also on the ballot in every city and county will be Democratic primary contests for the other two statewide offices.

Three candidates are seeking the nomination for lieutenant governor and four for attorney general.

Candidates seeking party nominations for the House of Delegates will be on the ballot in every Northern Virginia jurisdiction. In Alexandria, both major parties also are holding primary elections to choose nominees for sheriff.

The largest bond issue proposals will be submitted in Fairfax County. Voters there will be asked to approve or disapprove of borrowing to finance $51.1 million in park land acquisitions and improvements and $24.8 million in school construction. The school issue is divided into two proposals, one for $19.7 million in building construction and another for $5.1 million for air conditioning.

In Prince William County, voters will have an opportunity to approve or reject a proposal to borrow $14.95 million for school construction, almost all of it for a new high school.

In Loudoun County, four bond issues will be subject to voter approval. They include $5.3 million for school construction, $2 million for court facilities, $300,000 for acquisition of more land at the county landfill and $400,000 for park land acquisition.

Voters do not register by party in Virginia and state election law permits any qualified voter to cast a ballot in the primary of either party. However, a voter may not cast ballots in the primaries of both parties in a single election.

This means that voters in every city and county in Northern Virginia except Arlington will have to choose whether they will vote in the Republican or Democratic election. There is not Republican primary in Arlington, leaving all voters there free to cast ballots in the Democratic contest.

In all cities and counties other than Arlington, voters will be asked by election officials at the polls whether they wish to vote in the Republican primary or the Democratic primary. Officials will then set voting machines to restrict balloting to the designated party.

All machines will be set to register votes on bond issues regardless of the party designation made by a voter. Voters who wish to cast ballots on bond issues only will have an opportunity to tell election officials that they wish to vote in the "special election" and not a primary. For those voters, machines will be set to register bond issue votes only.

Names of candidates who have filed as independents and of party candidates who are unopposed for nomination will not be listed on primary ballots.

Republican races for nomination for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general were decided at the state GOP convention in Roanoke on June 4 and will not be on the primary ballot.

All polling place in Virginia will be open on Tuesday from 6 a.m. until 7 p.m.