WASHINGTON (AP) _ The nation's high technology work force has grown by 1.2 million people since 1993, hitting 5 million last year, according to a new industry report.

California boasted the most technology jobs and the greatest number created. Texas ranked second in both categories. Colorado has the highest concentration of high-tech workers _ 84 out of every 1,000.

Virginia and Georgia rounded out the top five states ranked by number of added technology jobs.

``The high-tech industry is no longer confined to Silicon Valley. ... It is now an industry whose scope, dynamism and impact extends from sea to sea,'' said William T. Archey, president of the American Electronics Association.

The association, together with the Nasdaq Stock Market, released the report Wednesday. It is based on Census Bureau and Labor Department statistics.

High-tech workers counted included everyone employed at companies that make technology products _ such as microchips or software _ or provide communications or computer services.

Technology jobs paid an average $58,000 annually, compared with $32,000 for other private-sector work, the report said.


On the Net: American Electronics Association site: http://www.aeanet.org