WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Clinton wants to spend $10 million to help gun manufacturers develop new technologies designed to prevent the weapons from being fired by anyone but their owners.

White House chief of staff John Podesta said Sunday that Clinton's proposed budget will include money for the National Institute of Justice to fund research and development of so-called smart-gun technology, which would use fingerprints, radio waves or other ways to ensure that a weapon would fire only when used by its owner.Several gun manufacturers are developing the new technology, and Podesta said the White House has talked with them.

"We've had some discussions with them about this, about how we can improve the technology so that, again, only a lawful owner can use the gun," Podesta said on CBS's "Face the Nation." "And if that's true, what you can prevent is a police officer being disarmed by a felon and having the gun used against the police officer. But I think almost most importantly, it'll prevent children from being able to get access to guns and use them."

Podesta announced the smart-gun initiative as he also urged the Republican-run Congress to pass gun control legislation. House and Senate negotiators were unable to agree on a juvenile crime bill that contained gun control measures, including background checks of purchasers at gun shows.

"Given the Congress that we have in front of us, it's going to be a very difficult chore to get that passed through this Congress," Podesta said.

"But we are going to press ahead. With members going home and listening to their constituencies, we still have a good chance of getting the commonsense gun legislation that is before Congress passed into law this year."