LUCAS COUNTY, OH (Toledo News Now) – The Lucas County Clerk of Courts office has released new reports showing the local economy is improving.
In 2012, 22,777 new cars and 36,673 used cars were sold in Lucas County, up from the 21,022 new cars and 35,240 used cars sold in 2011.
"We hit rock bottom in 2009, [but] 2010 was better than 2009, 2011 was better than 2010 and 2012 was better than 2011," said Clerk of Courts Bernie Quilter.
Denny Amrhein at Grogan's Towne Chrysler-Jeep-Dodge said he's not blowing smoke by calling 2012 a banner year.
"We just had the biggest year in the 55 years of the Grogan's name," Amrhein said. "Our new car department was up 45 percent."
He said more shoppers are looking to buy new compared to a few years ago.
"We got more jobs headed this way with Chrysler, [and] General Motors put a lot of people on," he said. "All that helps the economy drastically."
Quilter said higher car sales helped drive up sales tax totals in Lucas County, which were $53.7 million in 2012 compared to $50.9 million in 2011. Also, a new report revealed that in 2012 there were 2,798 foreclosure filings in Lucas County, down from 2,946 in 2011.
"Over the past three years, foreclosures are going down, auto sales are going up," Quilter said. "When that occurs, we're slowly coming out of recession and slowly coming into a recovery."