160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’Hernandez attributed that to a murky economy, reasonably healthy but clouded by a decline in the housing market. “Automobiles are different than other commodities such as food or clothing,” he said. “Families can’t choose not go grocery shopping, but they can choose to wait a year or a couple of months to purchase a car. But considering everything that’s been occurring with the domestic economy and the housing economy, a 4.3 percent decrease in new auto sales revenue is not bad.” Department stores showed a 7.7 percent increase; recreation products were up 8.1 percent, office equipment 23.1 percent; and leasing 28.4 percent. [email protected] (661) 257-5251 SANTA CLARITA – Retail sales in Santa Clarita showed a lukewarm second-quarter increase that translated to a 3.3percent raise in sales tax revenue for the city treasury. The largest categorical gain was in business-to-business sales, but the largest single increase was from service stations, where skyrocketing gasoline prices brought in $218,066 more than during the second quarter of 2005. Santa Clarita earned 7million in sales tax revenue, a gain of $225,480 over the second quarter of 2005. The city keeps 1percent of locally generated sales taxes, which accounts for 38percent of its general fund cash, treasurer Darren Hernandez said. Auto sales, which account for the biggest piece of the retail pie, dropped by 4.3 percent from April through June.