Zone 7 water users won't see a rate hike until 2014, thanks to ongoing cost-cutting measures from the water agency.
Over the past few years, Zone 7, which serves Pleasanton, Livermore, Dublin and the Dougherty Valley, has cut its annual operating budget by more than $4 million.
Cuts include a hiring freeze, employee benefit and cost-of-living wage concessions, and using more in-house resources to lower the amount and cost of outside contracts. Zone 7 has also cut the cost of chemical by participating in a consortium of Bay Area water agencies that buy the same water treatment chemicals and can save by buying in bulk.
The agency is also reducing its energy costs through a new solar system.
Rates will go up by the inflation rate -- about 2.65 percent -- in 2014. That will add about $1.04 a month to the typical household bill, assuming bulk suppliers of water pass along the increase to their customers.
"We remain committed to providing a high level of service while doing everything we can to control costs," said Board President Sarah Palmer. "Despite significant ongoing financial pressures facing water agencies throughout the state, Zone 7 has made significant strides in cutting operating costs on behalf of its ratepayers."