3019 Toupal Drive, Trinidad, CO 81082
Sales: (855) 427-7806
Service: (855) 480-1011
Parts:(855) 480-1009

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Dear Editor,
As I sat in the Trinidad City Council meeting on Tuesday, November 18th, I could not believe the passion that came from neighbors and businesses fighting for their right to protect their children and families, and the future of Trinidad as they saw it. Most of the people fighting had never met my family, the Ciminos. They were putting everything on the line to include a lawsuit against the city council in order to keep marijuana out of 3019 Toupal Drive and out of their neighborhood.

As a resident of Colorado Springs, I did not initially understand why this fight was so important to my dad, Jay Cimino. I certainly do now, and it all boils down to one word..."people". Although he is a businessman, for him this is not a business fight; it is a people fight. He is fighting to keep 28 Trinidadians gainfully employed. And I must say, this has been difficult at best to watch.

What many people don't understand about my dad is that, his entire adult life has been focused on helping people in some capacity. In the 1980's he focused on children. Through partnerships with the Denver Broncos, Mike Shanahan, Cities, Counties and Foundations, he was instrumental in building 11 playgrounds along the Front Range for disadvantaged youth. In addition to that, he built two football fields and a world class skate park. In the 1990's, his attention turned to the homeless and he led the charge to build the new Marion House in downtown Colorado Springs which today provides 800 meals per day to the homeless. In the 2000's, he redirected his efforts to help the military by providing transportation to families of those who were deployed to Desert Storm. Unlike many people who left Trinidad, he also "came back" to "give back". He first started in Trinidad by working with the City to build Cimino Park. He then went on to form the Trinidad Community Foundation. In 2007, he and my mom bought Mt. Carmel Church. I thought they were crazy! The music hall roof had caved in, the building was destroyed and the church declared unsafe for human occupancy. After 100 years of helping the community, Mt. Carmel needed the help. Today, as President of Mt. Carmel Health Wellness and Community Center, I am proud of our team and what we are accomplishing. Our dedicated staffs of 21, plus many volunteers serve the entire County with healthcare, wellness programs and community enrichment opportunities. By integrating medical and behavioral services along with wellness, the whole person is treated physically, emotionally and spiritually. This year Mt. Carmel is growing again, this time in Colorado Springs with the Center of Excellence. Its mission is to serve veterans and their families with wellness programs and transition services.

Seven years ago when we began building Mt. Carmel, the business model did not make good business sense and I struggled with its purpose. But once again, my dad's desire to help his hometown, a medically underserved community that was ranked 57th out of 59 counties in the State in healthcare prevailed. Even though my father used his own resources rebuilding Mt. Carmel, he gave it to the community, a 501c3, and it is run by the Board of Directors.

With Jay Cimino, it is all about people. I am quite sure the Trinidad City Council is made up of hard working people who want to serve the community. However, as it relates to this issue, I believe they are on the wrong side. Take Cliff Santistevan, for example. He and his wife are Trinidad natives raising four children. As a sales professional at Phil Long Toyota, his job is very important to him and his family. Is Council taking into consideration Cliff and 27 others like him...a hard working family raising children? If City Council is promoting the marijuana fortune hunters, then who is representing the innocent people whose lives could be affected by this? This truly is a PEOPLE fight.

As I reflect on what is going on with 3019 Toupal Drive and its effects on the community and my entire family, it makes me very sad. My mom and dad have given so much to the community and it is very disconcerting to me to realize that in a very short period of time, Phil Long Toyota may have no choice but to leave town. Because of his loyalty to the people of Trinidad, my father has fought to keep the Toyota dealership here. The time and energy he has exhausted in order to keep 28 people employed has taken its toll on everyone. I have spoken with many lifelong residents who are deeply concerned about the future of Trinidad and are for the first time thinking about leaving. That's one solution. The other solution is to stand up for what you believe in and the future of your community.

Make no mistake, this is not JUST about 3019 Toupal. It IS about the future effects on our children and the quality of life in Trinidad.

Gina Cimino President Mt Carmel HWCC

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Welcome to Phil Long Toyota of Trinidad!

As a premier Colorado Toyota dealer, we here at Phil Long Toyota of Trinidad provide for your every automotive need. Please feel free to explore our website to see our extensive inventory of new Toyotas and used vehicles. In addition to our friendly and knowledgeable sales staff, we also provide financing, Toyota service, and Toyota parts. Come visit us, give us a call, or contact us via this website and let us show you why our customers prefer Phil Long Toyota of Trinidad.