Legislative Plaza in Nashville all-clear after 'suspicious' package found

Legislative Plaza in Nashville all-clear after 'suspicious' package found

June 26th, 2014 by Andy Sher in Local - Breaking News

The Legislative Plaza in Nashville is condoned off after a 'suspicious' package was found

Photo by The Tennessean /Times Free Press.

Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell

Tennessee House Speaker Beth Harwell

Photo by Associated Press /Times Free Press.

NASHVILLE -- A suspicious substance included in a letter sent to House Speaker Beth Harwell's office is not dangerous, officials said this afternoon.

The substance's discovery by a Harwell staffer prompted officials to block access to Legislative Plaza, although the building was not evacuated.

"Earlier today, my office received an envelope with a suspicious substance, and law enforcement was alerted," Harwell said in a statement, noting she had not been in the office herself.

Two staffers were in the office.

"The material was deemed not hazardous, and we have received the 'all clear,'" Harwell said. "We sincerely appreciate the actions of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, the Metro Police Department, the Metro Fire Department, Homeland Security, the FBI, TBI, Metro Hazardous Materials Unit, and TEMA for taking swift and appropriate action to ensure our employees and the public are safe."

The Legislative Plaza houses the offices of many state legislators, including legislative leaders like Harwell. It also includes committee hearing rooms. The Legislature concluded its annual session in April.