Senate and House conferees are meeting to work out a compromise budget that will determine how much of a raise, if any, federal workers get this year and whether the next cost-of-living adjustment for government retirees will come next year or in 1984.

The House would give white collar federal workers (including 300,000 here) a 4 percent pay raise this October. It would allow U.S. retirees to get a full COL catchup on schedule next March.

The Senate plan does not allow any federal pay raise this year, skips the 1983 COL adjustment for retirees and limits their March 1984 increase to 4 percent.

Congress is expected to clear whatever compromise comes out of the conference. Here are the names of the conferees, the people who will decide what comes out of conference:

Senators: Republicans Pete Domenici (N.Mex.), William Armstrong (Colo.), Nancy Kassebaum (Kans.); Rudy Boschwitz (Minn.); Orrin Hatch (Utah); John Tower (Tex);Democrats, Ernest Hollings (D-S.C.); Lawton Chiles (Fla.); Bennett Johnston (D-La.) and Howard Metzenbaum (D-Ohio).

Representatives: Democrats, James Jones (Tex.), David Obey (Wis.); Stephen Solarz (N.Y.); Bill Nelson (Fla.); Les Aspin (Wis.); Bill Hefner (N.C.); Thomas Downey (N.Y.); Adam Benjamin (Ind.); Brian Donnelly (Mass.). Republicans, Delbert Latta (Ohio); Ralph Regula (Ohio); Bill Frenzel (Minn.); Ed Bethune (Ark.); Lynn Martin (Mass.); and Bobbi Fiedler (Calif.).

Lunchtime Heroes: When a stranger was spotted taking a purse from a Veterans Administration office a number of employes took off after him. The alleged thief dropped the bag and zipped down 12 flights of stairs in the McPherson Building, with Will Odom and friends in hot pursuit.

Tony Watson and Tom Wagner decided to head the bad guy off at the pass (in this case, a loading dock), did so, and then persuaded him to wait for a policeman to arrive.

It is estimated that between 50 and 70 VA people took part in the chase. Sounds like a good place for thieves to avoid.