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There's grumbling among those who keep an eye on the friendly skies.

Air traffic controllers are miffed because promised pay raises are long overdue. Replacements for controllers who struck in August 1981 were told they'd get a 6.6 percent pay hike. But they still haven't received it. The hang-up lies in Congress. Rep. William D. Ford (D) of Michigan, chairman of the House Post Office and Civil Service Committee, wants to strike a deal with the White House: You want the money for the raises? Then rehire dismissed controllers.

''We simply do not need all of those controllers,'' says Transportation chief Drew Lewis.m

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