General history

The Osoyoos Lake Water Quality Society (OLWQS) was founded in 1991 by local residents in direct response to a report compiled by Okanagan University College, in which Osoyoos Lake was described as a ‘nutrient cocktail of nitrates and phosphates’.

OLWQS is a non-profit, charitable organisation with members in Canada and the U.S.A.

Extensive scientific tests in 1990 showed the lake contained elevated concentrations of nitrates and phosphates. In 1996, it was graded ‘poor’ out of 124 lakes tested in BC.  With an increase in population, development and lake usage,  great care must be taken to ensure this vulnerable body of water and its surrounding waters are protected.

Mission Statement

Re-establish and maintain the water quality throughout the Okanagan Valley lake system, especially in Osoyoos Lake and area, so that it is suitable for plant and animal life and for human use and consumption, through:

  • Monitoring and testing of water quality
  • Finding the causes of water pollution and advising the public and the appropriate government departments of our findings
  • Educating the public about related environmental issues
  • Carrying out lake and waterway "cleanup" projects
  • Helping various levels of government in carrying out programs to improve the quality of the environment in the Okanagan Valley lake system


Click on the following link to review the Osoyoos Lake Water Quality Association's Constitution. 


Bylaws of Osoyoos Lake Water Quality Society (the “Society”)

Part 1 – Definitions and Interpretation


1.1    In these Bylaws:

“Act” means the Societies Act of British Columbia as amended from time to time;

“Board” means the directors of the Society;

“Bylaws” means these Bylaws as altered from time to time.

Definitions in Act apply

1.2    The definitions in the Act apply to these Bylaws.

Conflict with Act or regulations

1.3    If there is a conflict between these Bylaws and the Act or the regulations under the Act, the Act or the regulations, as the case may be, prevail.

Part 2 – Members

Duties of members

2.1    Every member must uphold the constitution of the Society and must comply with these Bylaws.

Amount of membership dues

2.2    The amount of the annual membership dues, if any, must be determined by the Board.

Member not in good standing

2.3    A member is not in good standing if the member fails to pay the member’s annual membership dues, if any, and the member is not in good standing for so long as those dues remain unpaid. 

Member not in good standing may not vote

2.4    A voting member who is not in good standing

(a) may not vote at any meeting, and

(b) is deemed not to be a voting member for the purpose of consenting to a resolution of the voting members.

Termination of membership if member not in good standing

2.5    A person’s membership in the Society is terminated if the person is not in good standing for 6 consecutive months.

Part 3 – Annual General and Special General Meeting of Members

Time and place of annual general meeting

3.1    An annual general meeting must be held at the time and place the Board determines.

Ordinary business at annual general meeting

3.2    At an annual general meeting, the following business is ordinary business:

 (a) consideration of any financial statements of the Society presented to the meeting;

(b) consideration of the reports, if any, of the directors;

(c) election or appointment of directors;

(d) business arising out of a report of the directors not requiring the passing of a special resolution.

Notice of special business

3.3    A notice of special business at an annual general meeting or a special general meeting must state the nature of any business, other than ordinary business, to be transacted at the meeting in sufficient detail to permit a member receiving the notice to form a reasoned judgment concerning that business.

Chair of Meeting

3.4    The Board will appoint the individual who will chair the meeting, generally this individual will be the president.

Alternate chair of l meeting

3.5    If there is no individual entitled under these Bylaws who is able to preside as the chair of a meeting within 15 minutes from the time set for holding the meeting, the voting members who are present must elect an individual present at the meeting to preside as the chair.

Quorum required

3.6    Business must not be transacted at any meeting unless a quorum of voting members is present.  Directors will be deemed to be present and able to vote at any meeting if they are taking part in the meeting via teleconference or video conference. 

Quorum for general meetings

3.7    The quorum for the transaction of business at a general meeting is 5 voting members.

Lack of quorum at commencement of meeting

3.8    If a quorum of voting members is not present within 30 minutes from the time set for holding a general meeting, the meeting will be terminated and will be rescheduled.

Order of business any meeting

3.9    The order of business at any meeting is as follows:

(a) elect an individual to chair the meeting, if necessary;

(b) determine that there is a quorum;

(c) approve the agenda;

(d) approve the minutes from the last general meeting;

(e) deal with unfinished business from the last general meeting;

(f) if the meeting is an annual general meeting,

(i) receive the directors’ report on the financial statements of the Society for the previous financial year,

(ii) receive any other reports of directors’ activities and decisions since the previous annual general meeting,

(iii) elect or appoint directors;

(g) deal with new business, including any matters about which notice has been given to the members in the notice of meeting;

(h) terminate the meeting.

Methods of voting

3.10  At any meeting, voting must be by a show of hands, an oral vote or another method that adequately discloses the intention of the voting members, except that if, before or after such a vote, 2 or more voting members request a secret ballot or a secret ballot is directed by the chair of the meeting, voting must be by a secret ballot.

Announcement of result

3.11  The chair of any meeting must announce the outcome of each vote and that outcome must be recorded in the minutes of the meeting.


3.12  A resolution must be decided at an annual general meeting or at a special general meeting.

Part 4 – Directors

Number of directors on Board

4.1    The Society must have no fewer than 3 directors.

Directors may fill casual vacancy on Board

4.2    The Board may, at any time, appoint a member as an interim director to fill a vacancy that arises on the Board as a result of the resignation, death or incapacity of a director during the director’s term of office.

Part 5 – Board of Directors Meetings

Calling directors’ meeting

5.1    A directors’ meeting may be called by the president or by any 2 other directors.

Conduct of directors’ meetings

5.2    The directors may regulate their meetings and proceedings as they think fit.

Quorum of directors

5.3    The quorum for the transaction of business at a directors’ meeting is fifty percent or more of the directors.

Part 6 – Board Positions

Election or appointment to Board positions

6.1    Directors must be elected or appointed to the following Board positions, and a director, other than the president, may hold more than one position:

(a) president;

(b) secretary;

(c) treasurer.

Directors at large

6.2    Directors who are elected or appointed to positions on the Board in addition to the positions described in these Bylaws are elected or appointed as directors at large.

Role of president

6.3    The president is the chair of the Board and is responsible for supervising the other directors in the execution of their duties, and:

Role of secretary

6.4    The secretary is responsible for taking minutes of meetings and assisting the president as required;

Absence of secretary from meeting

6.5    In the absence of the secretary from a meeting, the Board must appoint another individual to act as secretary at that meeting.

Role of treasurer

6.6    The treasurer is responsible for doing, or making the necessary arrangements for, the following:

(a) receiving and banking monies collected from the members or other sources and issuing receipts as necessary;

(b) keeping accounting records in respect of the Society’s financial transactions;

(c) preparing the Society’s financial statements and annual budgets;

(d) making the Society’s required filings;

(e) keeping the records of the Society in accordance with the Act;

(f) filing the annual report of the Society and making any other filings with the registrar under the Act;

(g) maintaining the Membership List.

Part 7 – Remuneration of Directors and Signing Authority

Remuneration of directors

7.1    The purposes of the Society shall be carried out without purpose of personal financial gain for its members, and any profits or other accretions to the Society shall be used for promoting its purposes. 

These Bylaws do not permit the Society to pay to a director remuneration for being a director, but the Society may, subject to the Act, pay remuneration to a director for services provided by the director to the Society in another capacity.

Bank Signing authority

7.2    Three directors shall be appointed to co-sign all cheques issued by the Society.  Each cheque must have the signature of any two of these three directors.

Part 8 – Dissolution of the Society

In the event of the winding up or dissolution of the Society, funds and assets of the Society remaining after the satisfaction of its debts and liabilities, if any, shall be given or transferred to such organization or organizations promoting the same or similar purposes as this Society, as may be determined by the members of the Society at the time of the winding up or dissolution, and if effect cannot be given to the aforesaid provisions, then such funds shall be given or transferred to some other organization, provided that such organization shall be a registered charity recognized by Revenue Canada, Taxation, as being qualified as such pursuant to the provisions of the "Income Tax Act" of Canada.  This provision is alterable by special resolution, pursuant to Section 22 of the Society Act.  


The board of directors of the OLWQS meets regularly, and members are notified of special events, news and information items via e-mail, Facebook and advertisements and stories in local newspapers. Our Annual General Meeting is held each spring. Questions and feedback are always encouraged. Volunteers welcome.


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