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The Texas Optimization Program

The Texas Optimization Program (TOP) provides advanced technical assistance to public water systems (PWSs) in an effort to protect public health. TOP also recognizes PWSs that voluntarily optimize performance of their surface water treatment plants and meet certain criteria.

TOP Technical Assistance

TOP staff and contractors provide technical assistance to PWSs struggling with conventional and/or innovative treatment technologies and distribution system issues. TOP staff and contractors also train PWS personnel, training providers, and TCEQ staff.

TOP Technical Assistance for PWSs Includes:

  • Special Performance Evaluations (SPEs)
  • Distribution system optimization including purchased water systems
  • Revised Total Coliform Rule (RTCR) Level 2 Assessments (L2As)
  • Customized technical assistance for issues like iron and manganese, disinfection byproducts (DBPs), and chloramines and nitrification

Training Materials and Presentations by TOP Staff and Contractors:

  • Directed Assistance Modules (DAMs) for PWS staff
  • Technical training modules for TCEQ staff
  • Customized technical guidance materials
  • Presentations to water operator groups, TCEQ staff, and training providers

TCEQ's free on-site Financial, Managerial, and Technical (FMT) Assistance can help PWSs and wastewater systems with many issues. If more advanced technical assistance is needed, please contact TOP staff at 512-239-4691. 

Recognition Program for Surface Water Treatment Plants

The recognition program is a voluntary, non-regulatory program that can help you improve the performance and efficiency of your existing surface water treatment plant without major capital improvements. 

Mandatory Comprehensive Performance Evaluations (mCPEs)

When the filters at surface water treatment plants exceed specific turbidity levels in consecutive months, an mCPE is triggered. The PWS is required to participate in an on-site evaluation of the treatment plant. TOP staff and contractors conduct these evaluations, generate a list of performance-limiting factors contributing to the turbidity exceedances, and create a corrective action plan for the treatment plant.