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Bargainers hold fast on SDI spending

Despite pressure from the Pentagon to modify the military budget bill for 1991, Senate and House negotiators reaffirmed Monday their decision to reduce spending on the "Star Wars" anti-missile program and restrict how the money can be spent. But the negotiators adjusted the congressional stance on two other issues that drew objections from the Pentagon: troops cuts and limits on money for the Milstar communication satellite program. Defense Secretary Dick Cheney warned Congress on Friday that he would recommend that President Bush veto the $288-billion budget bill unless it was changed to take account of Pentagon objections. Among the measures in the spending bill are a smaller troop cut of 78,500 from the 2.1-million U.S. troops worldwide and a larger $900-million for the Milstar program. A senior Pentagon official said he believed the administration would withdraw its threat of a veto despite the rebuff on the Strategic Defense Initiative and on other points of contention.Briefly. . .

The House approved a $182-billion bill that provides money for new programs to combat AIDS but retains a limitation on the use of federal money for abortions. The House voted 335-74 to accept the compromise bill, which provides funding for the departments of Labor, Education and Health and Human Services.

The House voted to spend $52.2-billion on farming, nutrition and rural development programs, including a half-million dollars to renovate the former home of retired bandleader Lawrence Welk in Strasburg, N.D., and build nearby tourist accommodations.

President Bush ordered the Pentagon to stop using the Hawaiian island of Kaho'olawe as a weapons range and to open talks with the state about the future of the area.

President Bush signed legislation authorizing up to $47-million for maintenance, repairs and alterations at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts over the next two years.