House of Lords - financial provision for members
It seems to me that:
Membership of the Lords should not be restricted to the independently wealthy - so peers should receive a (taxable) salary for attending.
Memebership should be possible for peers living a long way from London - so (vouchered) travel expenses should be allowed
Similarly some allowance must be made for overnight accommodation. I am puzzled as to the best way to do this. How do we deal with peers who attend so often that they want to have a permanent place in London?
Then there's the costs of doing the job - how much support should we receive? At present backbenchers get a computer, a desk, a telephone and free postage, plus a per-day allowance for other expenses. I'd like us to be able to afford proper research and secretarial support: perhaps by participating in a pool of people organised by the House. We'd do a better job, but we'd cost more, and so any increase should be couterbalanced by reducing our numbers.
Whatever the outcome I expect it to hasten Lords reform - why should anyone be appointed to a salary for life? But after waiting for ten years for someone to do all the reforms in one go, I'd rather get started, and deal with the financial side, than wait: the rest will follow.