LOS ANGELES — Despite efforts by California Gov. Jerry Brown to rein in spending and reduce what he calls the state's "mountain of debt," the state retains the second lowest general obligation bond rating in the 50 states from rating agencies.

Some speakers at The Bond Buyer's California Public Finance conference here last week discussed why the state retains single-A level general obligation bond ratings and suggested tax reforms to stabilize the revenue volatility seen as contributing to the low ratings.

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