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Florida's Technology Sector Attracting Skilled Workers Needing Homes
Date:11/15/2007

ORLANDO, Fla., Nov. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- With its warm business climate and appealing lifestyle, Florida is fast becoming one of the nation's leading technology states.

Statewide, Florida's high-tech industries added 10,900 net jobs in 2005, reaching a total of 276,400 jobs, according to Florida Cybercities 2007, a recent report by the American Electronics Association (AeA) using the most current state data available.

With a 4 percent growth rate in tech jobs, Florida was the second fastest growing "cyberstate" in 2005, and the fourth largest overall. Miami-Fort Lauderdale was the state's largest technology hub, employing some 75,300 tech industry workers, followed by Tampa-St. Petersburg (55,900 jobs), Orlando (42,600), Palm Bay-Melbourne (20,900), and Jacksonville (18,200).

"This report may surprise a lot of people around the country who do not think of Florida as a high-tech state," said Maryann Fiala, executive director of AeA's Florida Council in a September press release. "In fact, many people in Florida may not realize that the state employs more tech workers than every state but California, Texas and New York."

Fiala added that Florida's high-tech economy is diffused across the state. "Nine of the state's top ten metropolitan areas added jobs in 2005," she said. "This benefits Florida's economy greatly, as tech industry jobs pay, on average, 70 percent more than the state's average private sector wage."

Florida's diverse technology sector ranges from the aerospace industry, centered on Cape Canaveral and the "Space Coast," to a growing optics, laser and simulation training cluster in the Orlando area. In addition, South Florida, known as the "iCoast" has a long heritage in computer hardware, software applications, telecommunications and other IT fields.

WIRED magazine named Orlando one of the "Top 10 Tech Towns" and one of the "Top 10 Places to Get Your Geek On" -- rankings based on factors as diverse as proximity to
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SOURCE Florida Association of Realtors
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