As we move into the critical Christmas shopping season, local retailers definitely have the wind at their backs.


  1200 WOAI news reports that retail sales in Bexar County in August were up more than 12% over August of 2012, based on sales tax remittances to local governments and school boards.


  That adds to an impressive series of gains in retail sales dating back more than a year in Bexar County.


  Year to date, Bexar County sales tax collections are up 9% over the first eight months of 2012.


  That is also good news for local school districts, which are nearly totally dependent n sales tax revenues.


  The 12% gain in retail sales activity is nearly double the statewide increase, according to figures released by the State Comptroller's office, reflecting the strong economy in the San Antonio region.