House, Senate Negotiators Reach Deal on Defense Policy Bill

WASHINGTON  — House and Senate negotiators have reached agreement on a $612 billion defense policy bill that President Barack Obama has threatened to veto.

The bill gives Obama the increase in funding he requested, but he's unhappy with the way lawmakers did it. The bill authorizes increased defense spending by padding a war-fighting account that's not subject to limits Congress has imposed on military and domestic spending.

The bill offers a slight pay increase to service members and authorizes funds for ships, aircraft and weapon systems.

It calls for government matching funds to new 401(k)-type plans, replacing a system that doesn't leave retiring troops with anything unless they serve 20 years.

The deal, announced Tuesday, will go before the House and Senate for votes this week.

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