Representatives from the cemetery, conservancy and history center attended Wednesday’s meeting.
Smith said a donor has agreed to pay for the markers, at a cost of $2,000 each. The donor would then donate them to the city. Meeting participants debated whether the cemetery foundation and the park conservancy might pay for signs for their venues instead and assume maintenance of them once installed.
Council Member Michael Julian Bond and Doug Young, Atlanta’s assistant director for historic preservation, said the city should take responsibility for both. Bond said that if the donation did not come through, it would be possible to get it allocated through the city’s general fund.
"I think the city should completely own this, embrace it," Bond said.
Several city departments, including legal and parks and recreation, also will review the plans before they are brought to a council vote.
All agreed that it wasn’t a question of whether the markers should be erected, but how quickly the wheels of city government could move to make it happen.
“The conservancy agrees the panels are needed,” said, Mark Banta, chief executive of the conservancy.
The proposed language for the markers varies with location, but all refer to the practice of racial segregation laws instituted after the Civil War that disenfranchised generations of African Americans.