Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
   Board Members  |  Commissioner  |  Agency Info  |  Index A-Z  |  Search:
Subscribe to updates
TX Higher Education Data Center
College Compare
College For All Texans
Generation TX
Military and Their Families
Texas.gov Veterans Portal THECB HUB Link

Add Bookmark

Optional Retirement Program (ORP) Information


The Optional Retirement Program (ORP) is a defined contribution plan that is available as an alternative to the Teacher Retirement System (TRS) for full-time faculty, librarians, and certain administrators and professionals employed by Texas public institutions of higher education. ORP-eligible employees have 90 days from their first day of employment in an ORP-eligible position to make a one-time irrevocable election of ORP in lieu of TRS.


New ORP-Eligible Employees:

Read the Overview (provided by your institution and also below) as soon as possible. It contains information you need to know before your 90-day ORP election period expires. Your institution will provide you with a list of authorized ORP companies, local policies and procedures for electing ORP, and your employer contribution rate.

This webpage contains general information about ORP. Please contact your institution's Human Resources Office for specific information about the ORP plan at your institution.

Overview of TRS and ORP -- rev. August 2015

Additional formats:
     • PowerPoint Slideshow
     • PDF Version of Slideshow


ORP Resources: 

     • Who to Contact -- May 2016
     • Retirement Information for ORP Participants -- rev. December 2016
     • FAQs -- coming soon

     • ORP Eligibility Chart -- rev. May 2015
     • ORP Election Period Calculator -- November 2015

     • Current ORP Contribution Rates -- rev. July 2017
     • IRS Dollar Limitations on 403(b) Contributions -- rev. November 2016


State Law and Rules: 

     • Chapter 25, Coordinating Board's ORP Rules:
             • Link to Texas Administrative Code
             • View/download "user-friendly" PDF version -- December 2016 

     • Chapter 830, ORP Statute (Texas Government Code)
     • Chapter 804, QDROs (Texas Government Code) 

     • Selected ORP-related State Legislation (historical)
     • ORP-related Attorney General's Opinions (historical)

     • Texas Legislature Online (TLO)
        (info on State bills from past and current sessions)

     • ORP-related legislation in current session -- April 2017 (update coming soon)


Additional Information:

     • ORP Participation Report Summary (FY16) -- November 2016
     • FY16 ORP Report Data -- breakout by institution -- November 2016

     • ORP/TRS Contribution Rate History Chart -- July 2015
     • ORP Employer Contribution Supplement History -- rev. November 2015

     • List of Institutions of Higher Education in Texas -- August 2017
        (Texas ORP is only available at institutions in "Public Institutions" category.)

     • Overview of ERS and ORP -- for Coordinating Board employees only


Related Links:

     • Teacher Retirement System (TRS)
     • TRS Benefits Handbook

     • ERS: Group Insurance Information for Higher Education Employees
     • ERS: Retiree Insurance Eligibility
     • ERS: Disability Retirement

     • IRS Publication 571 -- Tax-Sheltered Annuity Plans (403(b) Plans)
     • IRS Publication 575 -- Pension and Annuity Income
     • IRS 403(b) Plan Fix-It Guide
     • IRS Employee Plans Compliance Resolution System (EPCRS) Overview

     • Social Security Administration -- info on WEP and GPO

     • Comptroller's Office: Annual Estimate of ORP State Contributions


If you're not able to find an answer to your question on this webpage: Contact us


ORP Administrators:

Amendments to Chapter 25:  (update coming soon)

ORP Administrators Contact List:  Please help us keep our institutional ORP Administrators Contact List up-to-date. We use this list to keep you aware of significant changes in ORP-related information and contact you individually when necessary. To provide updates to the list, please send an email to texorp@thecb.state.tx.us indicating the following contact information: Name, Position Title, Institution, Email, Phone Number.

ORP-related Bills Legislative Update:  Click here for ORP-related legislative information and updates.  -- as of April 2017 (update coming soon)

"ORP Update" slideshow from TACCHRP Summer Conference (06/01/2017) -- includes info on SB 1954


 Annual Report Preparers:

Deadline for FY17 ORP Report:  October 1, 2017

Data Entry:  The system is open for reporting your FY17 data (covering the period September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2017).

Instructions:  Instructions for Preparing ORP Report Data -- NEW (for FY17 report)

Link to Online Reporting System:

       • ORP Annual Report Online Reporting System

Update Your Contact Information:  To ensure that you receive report-related information, please check/update your contact information in the ORP Annual Report Online Reporting System.

Questions:  If you have questions about accessing or using the online reporting system, please send an email to ORP@thecb.state.tx.us. If you have questions about the content of the report, please send an email to texorp@thecb.state.tx.us

updated 08/15/2017
College for all Texans

Site Map | Staff Directory | Employment | Site Policies | TRAIL | Texas.gov | Fraud Hotline | Public Information Requests | Student Complaints | Customer Satisfaction Survey | Notice of Non-Discrimination

1200 E. Anderson Lane, Austin, TX 78752 || P.O. Box 12788, Austin, TX 78711-2788
Main: (512) 427-6101 || Student Loans: (800)-242-3062 or (512)-427-6340
©2017 THECB