NAPLES, Italy — Navy bases worldwide are merging two similar job communities — public works and engineering — into one command, and bases in Europe and the Far East are the last to make the transition.

In Europe and the Middle East beginning Sunday, public works departments of five “enduring bases,” or those that will be around for the foreseeable future, will be absorbed into the Naval Facilities Engineering Command, making it easier for leaders to keep tabs on available assets and personnel, officials said.

The five are Naval Support Activity Naples; Naval Air Station Sigonella, Sicily; Naval Support Activity Souda Bay, Crete; Naval Station Rota, Spain; and Naval Support Activity Bahrain.

It’s really a change on paper more than anything, and sailors and base employees should see no difference in services provided, said Cmdr. Jeffrey Hicks, public works officer at Naples.

The switches happen at the beginning of the military’s fiscal year.

The change “will make better use of resources and eliminate a lot of redundancies,” Capt. Floyd Hehe, commander of Naval Support Activity Naples, said at a consolidation ceremony in Naples on Thursday.

“If we do this right, the work we do in the future will be better than today,” Capt. William McKerall, commander of Naval Facilities Engineering Command Europe and Southwest Asia, said in English and Italian as more than 200 people gathered for the announcement.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now