#2 see if you can get the tax credit for biking to work http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/05/bicycle-commuter-credits.php
I think lights are underrated. A study on cyclists in Denmark shows incidents of injury a 19% less frequent for cyclists who always use a light. This was a designed study, not an observational study. Mostly we see the latter type of study which is subject to confounds.
The safety effect of permanent lights is about the same as some estimates as helmets.
Since I learned about the permanetn light study I always use a light unless I am riding in a group, even when it is sunny outside.
Right on re. the lights. Same now for cars to have the daytime running lights or headlights (I have the main headlights always on in my car (and it's been this way for a long time now with motorcycles) for the same reason.