What's left of a massive Camphor Laurel tree sits on Neil Baker's property - a stark reminder of the power of floods.
It's been four months since the 'seriously huge' tree weighing up to 15 tonnes washed down onto Mr Baker's farm near Murwillumbah from two kilometres upstream.
But it will be sometime before it's removed as unrelenting rain keeps the ground wet, hampering clean up efforts across the region.
"The place hasn't dried out since the floods ... it will take us years to recover," Mr Baker said who runs Tweed Valley Beef and Tweed Valley Pork.
"My 95-year-old father Bruce has never recalled a year like this."
NSW Farmers president Pete Arkle visited the flood-affected area where he said the sheer scale of the storms and floods of the past 15 months had left many with considerable damage that would take years - rather than months - to identify, restore, and repair.
"We've seen some communities smashed by two or even three major flooding events in a 12-month period, which is absolutely unprecedented," Mr Arkle said.
In a submission to the NSW Parliament Select Committee Inquiry on the Response to Major Flooding Across NSW in 2022, NSW Farmers made nine recommendations to improve reaction to natural disasters.
Mr Arkle said the three tiers of government needed to work together with farming and community leaders to look at how to rebuild more resilient businesses, communities and regions.
"Everything needs to be on the table including the possibility of new dams, increased on-farm storages, major road upgrades and more flexible planning rules to allow farm businesses to diversify into ventures like agritourism or more intensive farming systems," he said.
Other recommendations included ensuring the defence force was activated as soon as natural disasters occurred as well as Fair Trading NSW to establish a single point of contact for business recovering from flood events
They want the Harvestable Rights limit in coastal draining catchments increased to 40 per cent productive use in appropriate catchments.
They are also recommending consideration be given to a sliding scale of support for smaller or establishing primary producers based on percentage of off-farm income against net primary production income where the landholder.
"Once you get over the immediate devastation there is the long-term impact on your business, and in turn that has long-lasting Impacts on local jobs and communities," Mr Arkle said.
Meanwhile free financial planning and support services for primary producers has been extended, with the NSW government continuing the Rural Financial Counselling Service.
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