The number of Hispanic residents in Arkansas grew by 10.5 percent between 2000 and 2002. The rate is the 15th highest in the nation for growth among that ethnic group. The fastest growth in Hispanic population during the same period was 16.8 percent in Georgia. The latest estimates from the Census Bureau show the number of Hispanic children up to five years old increased by 14.6 percent in Hempstead County, while that number was up by 13.9 percent in Sevier County. Arkansas` overall population grew by 1.2 percent from 2000 to 2002. That`s a slower growth rate than the nation as a whole -- 2.2 percent. Arkansas now has a Hispanic population of 3.58 percent.