INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - The Cash for Clunkers program has hit the end of the road. Thethree billion dollar program will officially shut down Mondaynight.
The shutdown is being announced on the cars.gov web site thathas been the source of information about the program. While Cashfor Clunkers may have travelled a bumpy road, it's by in largebeing called a big success.
Participants received rebates up to $4,500 for trading in oldervehicles for more fuel-efficient models. The government estimatesthat more than 450,000 vehicles have been sold because of theprogram.
Skip Walters, general manager of O'Brien Toyota, said theprogram has been good for business despite some difficulty ingetting government reimbursement.
"We've kind of figured out what the government's looking for andthat's now coming a little faster," said Walters.
President Obama has promised to add staff to help process dealerpaperwork more quickly.
"I understand dealers want to get their money back as soon aspossible. But the fact of the matter is, this is a good newsstory," said the president.
Whether Cash for Clunkers will help more than the auto industry,said Bill O'Donnell, the director of graduate business programs atButler University, won't be known for months.
"But very few people would try to argue that it had no impact atall because look at the number of people that went out and boughtbrand new cars -- and I don't think that would have happenedwithout the program," said O'Donnell.
Walters said this time around the end of the program is not asurprise, so it should go smoothly.
O'Brien Toyota stopped taking Cash for Clunkers deals Thursdayafternoon. He said dealers have been told deals submitted by Mondayat 8 p.m. will be reimbursed.
For more information on the program, visit cars.gov
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