Before voting on Sound Transit 3, voters in the Greater Seattle area need as much information as possible about the massive project.

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VOTERS need as much information as possible about Sound Transit before they give the agency a huge share of the Puget Sound area’s future tax revenue.

That information includes the results of a state investigation into Sound Transit’s improper release of 173,000 customer emails to a supportive political campaign.

Sound Transit admitted that it erred in releasing the personal information to the Mass Transit Now campaign advocating for Sound Transit’s $54 billion plan to expand regional mass transit. State law prohibits governments from assisting political campaigns.

This mistake prompted a citizen complaint and investigation by the state Public Disclosure Commission. The PDC intends to complete its investigation well before ballots are mailed on Oct. 21.

The PDC’s sense of urgency is welcome. It should have the investigation ready for a Sept. 22 meeting, at which point commissioners could decide to penalize Sound Transit.

The Nov. 8 vote on Sound Transit 3 does not hinge on this complaint.

But voters should not have to decide on ST3, and commit perhaps $20,000 of their household’s money over the next 25 years to Sound Transit, with open questions about agency misbehavior.

One of the big questions about ST3 is whether voters can trust Sound Transit to be prudent and make the right decisions, once it receives a blank check.”

One of the big questions about ST3 is whether voters can trust Sound Transit to be prudent and make the right decisions, once it receives a blank check.

The credibility question is important because ST3 changes the rules. Unlike ST1 and ST2, this measure creates a new property tax and permanent taxing authority for Sound Transit.

If ST3 is approved as written, Sound Transit wouldn’t have to periodically ask voters for more support for decades. Those elections were a way to hold Sound Transit accountable during its first and second phases.

That’s one reason this editorial board has suggested Sound Transit pause and come back with a leaner proposal for its third phase. Doing so would not halt major investments in the region’s transportation network, including Sound Transit extensions, such as light rail between Seattle and Redmond

Other concerns include locking the region into a $54 billion spending plan that would take decades to complete.

A prompt investigation into Sound Transit’s improper campaign assistance would help voters make an informed decision this fall.