Taxable retail sales rise statewide, but most Kitsap cities lose ground

By Rachel Pritchett

Some encouragement comes this morning from the state Department of Revenue, which reported a rise in taxable retail sales statewide, the first time since 2007 when the economy tanked.

Statewide, taxable retail sales increased 3 percent to nearly $104 billion in 2011 over 2010. That compares to a 0.1 percent drop in 2010 and a steep 11 percent drop in 2009.

“Consumer spending has largely rebounded,” said Department of Revenue spokesman Mike Gowrylow, adding, “I think the general consensus is we’ve bottomed out.”

For Kitsap County, taxable retail sales went up in 2011, but not as sharply. Just more than $3 billion was reported, a modest 0.35 percent increase over the previous year.

Bremerton topped local cities for the biggest rise — 4.5 percent for a total of $686 million.

But other local cities lost ground last year.

Port Orchard experienced a 3.7 percent decrease to $312 million. Poulsbo’s went down 1.4 percent to $324 million and Bainbridge Island’s slipped 0.43 percent, to $280 million.

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